Sex changes, hysterical pursuits and talking dogs; nothing is too crazy in A Cheonggyecheon Dog, the latest film by the young director Kim Kyung-Mook, whose controversial Faceless Things could be seen in Rotterdam in 2007.
The Cheonggyecheon River is the natural dividing line between the northern and southern parts of Seoul. Ever since the Japanese occupation of Korea in the early 20th century, much of the River has been used as a sewer. Lee Myung-Bak (now president of South Korea) in his time as mayor of Seoul artificially polished up the River, making it one of the city's major tourist attractions now. Here we immediately reach the underlying socially critical message of the film; Seoul is a city that is changing at high speed and is increasingly becoming artificial. Old parts of the city are being demolished and new buildings put up.
When the protagonist meets a talking dog, that is the starting point of a surrealist pursuit through the whole of Seoul. In the scenes with the man and the dog, we see parts of Seoul that are about to disappear, in the scenes with the woman, the parts that already have been replaced. Kim Kyung-Mook uses all conceivable film styles mixed up in A Cheonggyecheon Dog, a major contrast with his formal and stern first film. It's a fresh, campy film that was visibly made with pleasure. (IdL)


Original title
Cheonggyecheonui gae
Filmmaker
Kim Kyung-Mook
Premiere
International premiere
Country
South Korea
Year
2008
Medium
HDcam
Length
62’
Language
Korean
Producer
Kim Kyung-Mook
Production Company
Nowhere Production
Sales
Nowhere Production
Writer
Kim Kyung-Mook
Cinematography
Yu Il-Seung
Editor
Kim Kyung-Mook
Production Design
Kim Hee-Kyung
Sound Design
Lee Min-Hee
Music
Lee Min-Hee
Cast
Park Ji-Hwan