The first 1012 films are from The 1,000 Greatest Films list, and maintain the original order. The films that follow…
Sin-ae moves with her son Jun to Miryang, the town where her dead husband was born. As she tries to come to herself and set out on new foundations, another tragic event overturns her life.
Ottway once uttered with great anger, looking at the skies, screaming out loud,
“Fuck Faith, Earn it”.
Secret Sunshine is undeniable proof how excruciatingly true those words are.
The grief of a Mother losing her child is insatiable. It cannot be understood by anyone else, not even by God. It is the worst way for God to punish a human being. It is the worst plight a human being can be subjected to. Her unbearable loss makes her surrender at God’s feet and accept everything as His will. This faith is rooted from the fact that she is helpless. Everyone she turns to is supportive, but she knows none actually fathom what she is going through and everything is just…
My Chang-dong Lee journey is now officially over (well until he makes a new film) and it has been somewhat of a revelation this year. I’ve put off reviewing Secret Sunshine because I am still unsure quite what to make of it as it is arguably his most difficult work to date. It is tricky talking about the film without mentioning particular plot points but I will try my best.
The film is emotionally raw and complex featuring a protagonist that goes through near-inconceivable ordeals. It is these ordeals that made it such a troubling film for me as the key scene that turns the narrative on its head seemed forced and deliberately manipulative. After the ‘event’ (it really is…
I don’t know if not realizing director Lee Chang-dong was the one who brought Oasis, one of my all-time favourite Korean films, to the screen was a help or a hindrance to my enjoyment of Secret Sunshine.
Had I realized, I may have been more sensitive to the thematic and stylistic similarities. Not knowing, though, I judged this film on its own merit, and I’m sorry to say I found it wanting.
I think each work by a director should be judged on its own merit, but, this being the next film from him, and having some thematic and stylistic similarities begs comparison.
Both films start with protagonists who are unlikeable. In Oasis, the recently released from prison Sol Kyang-gu.…
Included In Lists:
Criterion Collection - #576
Review In A Nutshell:
South Korean cinema is not an area I have thoroughly explored, and after seeing the gruesome Oldboy and now the dramatically painful Secret Sunshine, I have gained this drive in me to further explore what the country has to offer. Secret Sunshine is a film I decided to watch, because it was available by a local world-based television station, running into this film by chance rather than with predetermination, and I was glad I took that chance because it was actually a pleasant and worthwhile experience, even if overall it did not reach to soaring heights as I might have expected from a thoughtful drama.
Secret Sunshine starts off…
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
This should have been right up my alley. Forgiveness is one topic that I always find fascinating, and I like to see how others understand the complex topic. Unfortunately I couldn't wait for Secret Sunshine to end and I'm trying to figure out why that is.
Is it because the individual scenes we so long, with very little editing, as though shot in real time? This could contribute to a slow pacing, which the film definitely has, but pacing is very rarely an issue with me. Is it because there were so many scenes of singing in church and praying everywhere else? Maybe. I was getting quite impatient with that entire middle section showing the born-again aspect of the film.…
The devastating tragedies faced by the protagonist in Secret Sunshine would be enough to bring the strongest person to their knees in despair. Losing your husband and the child almost at the same time would have to be emotionally devastating to anyone. So how does this heroine survive her trials? By submitting herself to the grace of God and putting all her trust in Him, of course. She learns to let go of her problems, and even forgives those who have done her great wrongs in her path to redemption.
But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Shin-ae has recently been widowed and lives in a small South Korean city with her young son. They…
Held together by Jeon's powerful performance, but it left me wanting.
The storyline is one of the most complex I've seen. It shows a woman's exploration of faith after a traumatic event.
Gets a little preachy and up its own ass in the third act but it's still a compelling tale of grief and misfortune.
Re-watched after seeing many times and writing an essay about the film over 5 years ago. Retains its power and fascination, and was able to pick up on more of the details that made me appreciate even more. Probably my favorite Korean film.
Monotonous and disheartening, it's an overload of depression that hurts more and more as the running time ticks down. Although I came here for Song Kang-ho, Jeon Do-yeon absolutely stole the show as the lead with her performance that moved hearts.
Not everyone's cup of tea, but a very soulful tale indeed.
If this doesn't convert you into a Jeon Do Yeon worshipper, I don't know what will. Best performance of 2007.
꾸역꾸역 넘기는 슬픔
그래도 남은 사람들은 살아야 되니까
무슨 일이 일어날지 예상이 되는데도 보는 내내 자꾸 무서워지는 영화
One of those films that I put on my Netflix queue a while back and don't remember why. It's not the usual kind of movie I would watch, so it through me a bit when it didn't go where I expected. Decent movie, but not what I was expecting.
After fully coming into his own with Oasis, Chang-dong Lee continues his ascent as the greatest Asian auteur with another potent cinematic novel; the rigid aesthetic of Haneke meets the confrontational topicality of Von Trier, but Lee has an unflinching humanism both of those great filmmakers lack.
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…
UPDATED: May 19, 2016
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…