Archive of films Spring in My Hometown / Arrumdawoon Sheechul

South Korea
1998, 121 min

Section: New Korean Cinema
Year: 2001


It’s 1952. Sungmin and Changhee are both thirteen and the best of friends. Their small village in the ‘valley of flowers’ as they call it in a Korean song must, like the rest of the country, face the consequences of the war. An American base is nearby and so the local inhabitants eagerly harass supposed Communist supporters. The hiding place of one suspicious element is discovered; an alleged Communist is dragged from a well and cruelly beaten by his former neighbours. But not everyone is suffering as a result of the war. Sungmin’s sister is going with an American soldier, and this gives the whole family certain privileges. Sungmin’s father even gets work at the base and the family is doing well. In contrast, Changhee’s mother doesn’t even have enough money for bread. One day Sungmin and Changhee are spying on soldiers spending time with local prostitutes. To their great surprise they recognise Changhee’s mother among the women, as well as Sungmin’s father: her pimp. The next day Changee disappears without trace. Sungmin realises that his world has changed forever.

About the director

Lee Kwang Mo studied English literature at university in Korea, and then graduated in film and television studies from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1988. In 1994 he set up a film centre where the Korean public could come to find out about and see films by Jarmusch, Tarkovsky, Kiarostami, Bergman and others. He lectures at many universities and film schools. Spring in My Hometown, his writing-directing debut, was screened at several top festivals including IFFs in Cannes, Tokyo and Salonika.

About the film

Black & white, 35 mm

Section: New Korean Cinema
Director: Lee Kwang Mo
Screenplay: Lee Kwang Mo
Dir. of Photography: Kim Hyung Koo
Music: Won Il
Editor: Kang Sung Kyu
Producer: Jeong Tae Sung , Kang Sung Kyu
Production: Korean Film Art Centre BeakDu-DaeGan
Cast: Ahn Sung Ki, Song Ok Sook , Bae Yu Chung , Lee In , Kim Jung Woo, Yu O Seong, Myung Soon Mi

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