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Ko - production in Busan
  • Answer, 1980s!
  • by HWANG Hee-yun /  Jan 09, 2018
  • Films about wounds of the 1980s

    During the 1980s, Korea had many political upheavals. The country went through radical political and economic changes after the sudden collapse of despotism following the assassination of President PARK Chung-hee on October 26th, 1979. Korea’s economy soon began to rapidly grow although democracy was still evolving at the time. In those days, people living in Korea experienced the unforgettable historical pain of the Gwangju massacre. In addition the government, amidst political resistance, frequently carried out covert torture. 

    The Korean film industry has frequently returned to this turbulent time, releasing movies that try to capture the reality of the political period rather than resorting to cinematic exaggeration. Audiences have a meaningful way to reflect on recent Korean history thanks to these documentary-like films mostly based on true stories. Many films about Gwangju in 1980 have been triumphant at the box office. May 18, 26 Years and A Taxi Driver were commercially successful films that dealt with the Gwangju Democratization Movement. Additionally, two films that highlighted the death of political protesters from government sanctioned torture, National Security and 1987: When the Day Comes, were big sensations to audiences with their realistic portrayals of the wounds of the 1980s. Though the former was a not a blockbuster, eventually amassing just over 300,000 moviegoers during its run, the latter is doing well luring 4,087,434 viewers.
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