Ah, North Korea. Our mysterious neighbor. They’ve been in the news quite a lot lately, what with their sinking a South Korean ship, holding banquets for Chinese officials and executing their own officials over a misguided currency revaluation amongst other things. So what better time than the present to learn about that crazy country through… movies?
Our friends at Dada are hosting a North Korea film festival with Koryo Tours, the guys who can take you through Kim Jong Il’s playground if you ever should want. Entry is free, but seating is limited, so they request that you arrive before the 8pm start time.
The three films you’ll be seeing are:
- The Game of Their Lives (2003) – “A BBC documentary producer is given unprecedented access in North Korea to chronicle the story of the famed 1966 World Cup team from the North that advanced to the quarterfinals. The feature includes interviews with surviving members of the team, English fans and soccer pundits who saw the North Koreans upset Italy, 1-0, and go up 3-0 against Portgual before Eusebio eventually rallied the Portuguese.” (From IMDB)
- Centre Forward (1978) – “Produced in 1978, this North Korean football-themed movie contains universal elements but has a distinct local flavour. Cultural aspects infuse relationships between players and management, mothers and sons and senior and junior team members. Fascinating both as an example of North Korean filmmaking and a strong story of overcoming athletic adversity, Centre Forward is at once inspirational, dramatic, amusing, and educational. This foreign re-release coincides with North Korea’s qualification for only their second ever football World Cup. Even better, by showing the sport’s importance in societies very different from our own, this illustrates the truly universal appeal of the ‘beautiful game’.” (From Dada)
- Our Fragrance (Our Flavour) (2003) – “This film reflects the early changes and nascent conflicts which began emerging in the North Korean society after the introduction of market-oriented reforms in July 2002… Pyeong-ho, a researcher-scientists who develops the new types of Korean traditional dish, Kimchi, comes from a conservative family. He tries to preserve and incorporate the traditional values into modern life. A young guide-interpreter, Sae-byeol, who works for International Travel Company, is overly accustomed tot he lifestyle influenced by foreign traditions. Destiny makes Pyeong-ho and Sae-byeol meet at a fashion show in Pyongyang. Participation in this competition turns into a tough examine for both of them and their families.” (From a document detailing the script)
So you’ve got a documentary, a soccer epic, and a “romantic-nationalistic-propaganda-comedy” as Dada calls it – aka an awesome night out. Best of all, I think they sell popcorn there too.
When: 8PM on April 7, Wednesday
Where: Dada, 115 Xingfu Lu, between Fahuazhen Lu and Pingwu Lu in Changning District, 幸福路115号进法华镇路