Korean movie is last in Global Visions film series

The last film of the fall semester Global Visions film series is "Chunhyang," an epic Korean movie, Tuesday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. in the Memorial Union Lecture Bowl.

The plot of "Chunhyang" is a story about two lovers separated by class, such as the doomed romance between a penniless writer and a showgirl seen in "Moulin Rouge," or even the pairing of a corporate shark and a hooker-with-a-heart-of-gold seen in "Pretty Woman." In this case, the forbidden love is between Mongyoung Lee (Cho Seung-woo), a governor's son, and Chunghyang Sung (Lee Hyo-jeong), the beautiful daughter of a courtesan, who marry in secret after a brief courtship. Unfortunately, Mongyoung cannot tell his father about his class-defying union, as it will not only bring shame to the family name, but also potentially jeopardize a future appointment to the Royal Court.

Their married bliss is short-lived, as the governor is transferred to Soeul and Mongyoung is obligated to follow, leaving Chunhyang behind only with a promise to return some day. Unfortunately, years go by, and a new governor (Lee Jung-hun) takes office in the region who wishes to have Chunghyang as his mistress. Determined to remain faithful to her absent husband, Chunghyang refuses the governor's demands. Enraged by such insolence, the new governor has Chunghyang beaten, thrown in prison, and sentenced to death.

"Chunhyang" has the distinction of being the first Korean film to ever compete in the Cannes Film Festival, and is a much deserved global debut for Im Kwon-taek, who is considered to be Korea's leading director, with a filmography that stretches four decades and numerous awards to his name. It may be rather unconventional in execution, but the film's sheer beauty and familiar yet heartfelt story make "Chunhyang" a rare and uplifting movie-going experience, whether you are familiar with pansori or not.

Funded by the Multicultural Awareness Committee and sponsored by the Department of Anthropology and the Anthropology Club. Organized by Dr. Marcia Mikulak, Assistant Professor of Anthropology.