@3 days ago with 1 note
#the scenic route #last movie i saw
The Scenic Route (Mark Rappaport, 1978)
a total “where has this been all my life” moment. i’m in love. in awe. in love.
@4 days ago with 3 notes
#무릎과 무릎사이 #between the knees #last movie i saw
Between the Knees (Lee Jang-ho, 1984)
i’ve heard about the reputation for sleaze a lot of early 80’s Korean film carries, and with a title like this i was a little worried. i’m not sure what constitutes that sleaze, but i don’t think this should be grouped there. confronting and full of sex, yes, but it is all pointed and critical, examining through it a Korea at the crossroads of tradition and an encroaching Western modernity.
this might seems weird to say but sometimes it plays like an Emanuelle movie, except with every encounter loaded with that tradition-modern rift; the main character Ja-young caught between a desire that wants to push through and a society that seeks to keep her kind caged. cruelty is levelled at her from both sides, the men obviously getting from her what they want regardless of their siding East or West.
Ahn Sung-ki again plays the stoic, good model of Korean man, in white robes and the son of a traditional music family. the western nightmare is encapsulated by Ja-young’s brother forever alone practising Michael Jackson moves into a mirror. and Ja-young struggles to live in between. maybe i’m reading it wrong (through either personal denseness or removal from the context the film was released in) but the movie is oddly and refreshingly unreproaching in it’s regard for her exploration. i mean not much hope is given, but cause clearly lies on a social level rather than her social failure, her passion is real and her own, and she doesn’t even die at the end.
oh! there’s a scene in the rain with lightning strikes and they’re shown as the most artificial looking things, like lines on a black or red screen. these frames are so scratched and look like they’ve been sourced from other movies from Korea’s film past. and man i hope so, and that these aren’t mere lightning strikes but Lee’s intentional evocations of that past and the women they have struck over and spoken for in those other films.
it’s such a charged movie, full of ideas and deserving of someone better than i to dedicate a bunch of words to it. look what i did! i could’t help it. all i meant to say was i liked it ok. more points given because i love this era, politically as well as aesthetically.