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  • We Remember You with Films
  • by KIM Hyun-jung /  Mar 07, 2017
  • Independence Fighters in Korean Films and the Real People
     

    Director LEE Joon-ik completed shooting his new film PARK Yeol two weeks before Samiljeol Independence Movement Day. The film finished shooting at meaningful times as Samiljeol is one of the biggest resistance movements during the Japanese Occupation. 

    The main character of the film, PARK Yeol is the real person of the same name. He led the first anarchist organization in Joseon Dynasty and was sentenced to life in prison for attempting assassination of the Japanese crown prince Hirohito. He served until the end of the Japanese colonial rule. 

    There are a lot of movies based on real people among the movies set in Japanese Occupation Era which rushed in recent years. Director LEE’s previous movie DONGJU; The Portrait of A Poet (2016) is one of them. The film is about poet YOON Dong-ju and his cousin SONG Mong-kyu, an independence fighter. SONG started an independence movement as a young boy and was jailed a few times. He was sent to jail again in 1944 while studying in Japan and died in prison in March 1945, five months before liberation.  

    KIM Jee-woon’s The Age of Shadows (2016) has many real characters. LEE Jung-chool (SONG Kang-ho), a Korean man working as an officer for Japanese police, is based on HWANG Ok, key figure of the famous incident. HWANG helped the Heroic Corps, an anarchist independent movement group, to carry bombs into Korea but confessed that he was a secret agent of Japan after he was arrested for the mission. His real identity has not yet been revealed. Meanwhile, KIM Woo-jin (GONG Yoo) is based on KIM Si-hyun, a member of the Heroic Corps while head of the corps JUNG Chae-san (LEE Byung-hun) is modeled after KIM Won-bong. 

    KIM Won-bong organized the Heroic Corps when he was 21 years old and led a movement for national liberation in China. Actor CHO Seung-woo played KIM in CHOI Dong-hoon’s Assassination (2015). In addition, independence fighter KIM Koo and representative pro-Japanese collaborator LEE Wan-yong are in the film. KIM Koo recollects his comrades who died before liberation in this movie. And we recollect them with movies.
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