[KS] New documentary on North Korea: A STATE OF MIND

jrpking jrpking at interchange.ubc.ca
Fri Jul 29 15:01:12 EDT 2005

> A new film takes you inside the secret world of North Korea and the hearts
> and minds of three generations of North Koreans??
> by Daniel Gordon 
> US Theatrical Premiere Run starts Wednesday, August 10 in New York at the
> Film Forum
> A STATE OF MIND is a rare glimpse into North Korea, a nation described
> recently on the op-ed page of The New York Times as ??the most bizarre?? most
> regimented, militarized and oppressive country in the world.?? North Korea
> may be unique among nations in not having had a single political
> demonstration in the past 50 years; however its officially devised Mass
> Games is a spectacle of extravagant proportions: 100,000 people participate
> in elaborately choreographed, dazzlingly colorful, jaw-dropping gymnastic
> displays, after months of daily, grueling rehearsals. It??s all for the
> delectation of Kim Jong Il, often referred to as ??Dear Leader Kim?? or ??Dear
> General.?? Whether the reclusive dictator will deign to show up on the day of
> the performance is a matter of constant speculation.
> For 9 months A STATE OF MIND British filmmaker Daniel Gordon followed the
> lives of two North Korean schoolgirls (13-year-old Pak Hyon Sun and
> 11-year-old Kim Song Yun) as they train for the Mass Games. Gordon paints a
> candid portrait of their difficult (though by North Korean standards, very
> privileged) lives in this fascinating look at one of the world??s most hidden
> societies. Through the voice of three generations of North Koreans, the film
> reveals more of North Korea than anything that??s ever been seen before...
> ??An extraordinary documentary...a rare picture of a secret and little
> understood country??  The Guardian (London)
> ??The footage of the games is magnificent but it is the insight into Korean
> lives that is breathtaking??  Sunday Times (London)
> ??Terrific?? Gordon had amazing access, going inside the girls?? exceptionally
> privileged homes.??  ??Amy Taubin, Film Comment
> ??93 unblinking minutes of insight into the lives and minds of the people
> living in North Korea, one of the last locked-down communist dictatorships.??
> --Bruce Wallace, Los Angeles Times
> A STATE OF MIND play dates:
> Aug 10, Film Forum, New York (filmforum.org)
> Aug 19, Facets Cinematheque, Chicago (www.facets.org/cinematheque)
> Aug 26, Roxie, San Francisco (www.roxie.com)
> Sept 2 Laemmle Fairfax 3, Los Angeles (www.laemmle.com)
> Sept 9, University of Minnesota Film Society Bell Auditorium, Minneapolis
> (www.mnfilmarts.org/bell)
> Sept 23 Grand Illusion Cinema, Seattle (www.grandillusioncinema.org)
> US distributor: Kino International kino.com
> Official website of the film: www.astateofmind.co.uk
Ross King
Associate Professor of Korean, University of British Columbia
Dean, Korean Language Village, Concordia Language Villages
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