Sunday, May 27, 2007

Learning Korean through Cinema...

Ok, so I've been supplementing my Korean study with watching Korean film. It's a bit like trying to learn English by watching Stanley Kubrick or Quentin Tarantino films... unnerving.

So far, I've watched a really awesome horror film, A Tale of Two Sisters, and the three thrillers by Chan Wook Park, Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, Oldboy (interestingly, the movie that the VT shooter had a poster of in his dorm room), and Lady Vengeance. I liked the final movie best, as it featured an evil Korean hagwon teacher as the main villain and showed some of the blending of English with Korean culture.

Now, I'm not sure how representative these films are of general box office hits in ROK (and then how remote daily Korean culture is from their film industry), but there is definitely a different understanding of ghosts and death that I have seen come up in other Asian art that fascinates me. There is a blending of the worlds of the dead with those of the living that seems almost natural. I cannot figure it out completely, but it makes me wonder if I'll run into dead spirits wandering around in the countryside. Hm...

I guess that's one more thing for Mom to worry about. I gave her Jane's book Prisoner of Wonderland so she could get a sense of the worst that might befall (although I guess I'm a bit safer from the worst of hagwon evil by taking over a MUCH better position). Poor scared Mommy. I will be fine!

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