MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 634 this week

Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East?: A Zen Fable (1989)
"Dharmaga tongjoguro kan kkadalgun" (original title)

7.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 852 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 9 critic

Three people live in a remote Buddhist monastery near Mount Chonan: Hyegok, the old master; Yong Nan, a young man who has left his extended family in the city to seek enlightenment - Hyegok... See full summary »

Director:

Writer:

0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: August

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they recommend for August 2014.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 45 titles
created 03 May 2012
 
a list of 25 titles
created 17 Jan 2013
 
a list of 31 titles
created 10 May 2013
 
a list of 43 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 33 titles
created 3 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East?: A Zen Fable (1989)

Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East?: A Zen Fable (1989) on IMDb 7.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East?: A Zen Fable.
2 wins. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Zen Noir (2004)
Comedy | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A nameless 'noir' detective, still mourning the loss of his wife, investigates a mysterious death in a Buddhist temple, but his logical, left-brained crime-solving skills are useless in the intuitive, non-linear world of Zen.

Director: Marc Rosenbush
Stars: Duane Sharp, Kim Chan, Debra Miller
The Cup (1999)
Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

While the soccer World Cup is being played in France, two young Tibetan refugees arrive at a monastery/boarding school in exile in India. Its atmosphere of serene contemplation is somewhat ... See full summary »

Director: Khyentse Norbu
Stars: Orgyen Tobgyal, Neten Chokling, Jamyang Lodro
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Buddha's Lost Children is a feature-length documentary film about a Thai Buddhist monk who - armed only with his faith and skills and master boxer skills - wages an inspirational battle to ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Verkerk
Stars: Phra Khru Bah Neua Chai Kositto, Khun Ead, Pan Sean
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In rural India, a young woman named LILA and her mother VINATA, a temple dancer wed to a Hindu god, find themselves on the fringes of society, struggling to make ends meet.

Director: Khyentse Norbu
Stars: Shahana Goswami, Ruvin De Silva, Mohamed Adamaly
Reconvergence (2012)
Documentary | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Reconvergence offers an intriguing exploration of mortality, consciousness and identity in the modern age from the perspectives of four distinct characters: a naturalist, a neuroscientist, ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Tyndall
Stars: Eustace Conway, Preston Estep III, S. Waite Rawls III
Samsara (2001)
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A spiritual love-story set in the majestic landscape of Ladakh, Himalayas. Samsara is a quest; one man's struggle to find spiritual Enlightenment by renouncing the world. And one woman's ... See full summary »

Director: Pan Nalin
Stars: Shawn Ku, Christy Chung, Neelesha BaVora
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Director: Barrie McLean
Stars: Leonard Cohen, Pema Ozokten, Tsering Sonam
Buddha (1961)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Director: Kenji Misumi
Stars: Kôjirô Hongô, Charito Solis, Shintarô Katsu
Mystic India (2005)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

11-year old Neelkanth has long dreamed of being a Yogi, and in the darkness of the rainy evening of June 29, 1792 he secretly leaves his family behind in the Northern India city of Ayodhya ... See full summary »

Director: Keith Melton
Stars: Rupak Mehta, Peter O'Toole, Latesh Patel
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

This is the story of an ancient meditation technique named Vipassana, which shows people how to take control of their lives and channel them toward their own good.It is the story of a ... See full summary »

Directors: Eilona Ariel, Ayelet Menahemi
Stars: Kiran Bedi
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

This is an extraordinary tale from over 2600 years ago, of a Prince who is endowed with everything he needs and more. Luxury, palaces and all hearts desires, are provided to him by his ... See full summary »

Director: Saman Weeraman
Stars: Gagan Malik, Anchal Singh, Ranjan Ramanayake
Zen (2009)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

'Zen' Buddhist teacher Dogen Zenji is a very important religious person during the Kamakura period, 750 years ago. After his mother died, he decides to move to China and settle as a ... See full summary »

Director: Banmei Takahashi
Stars: Kankurô Nakamura, Yuki Uchida, Ryushin Tei
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Yi Pan-Yong ...
Hye-gok
Sin Won-Sop ...
Ki-bong
Hae-Jin Huang ...
Hae-jin
Su-Myong Ko ...
Abbot
Byeong-hui Yun ...
Ki-bong's mother
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Myeong-deok Choi
Hui-yeong Kim ...
The Other Disciple
Eun-yeong Lee
Seon-hye Lee
Edit

Storyline

Three people live in a remote Buddhist monastery near Mount Chonan: Hyegok, the old master; Yong Nan, a young man who has left his extended family in the city to seek enlightenment - Hyegok calls him Kibong!; and, an orphan lad Haejin, whom Hyegok has brought to the monastery to raise as a monk. The story is mostly Yong Nan's, told in flashbacks: how he came to the monastery, his brief return to the city, his vacillation between the turbulence of the world and his hope to overcome passions and escape the idea of self. We also see Hyegok as a teacher, a protector, and a father figure, and we watch Haejin make his way as a curious and nearly self-sufficient child. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

monastery | teacher | orphan | monk | master | See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 September 1989 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

Why Did Bodhi-Dharma Leave for the East?  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Film took seven years to complete, using a single camera, and was edited entirely by hand. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Hyegok: Haejin! Haejin! There is no beginning and no end. Nothing is immutable, everything changes. That thing which does not come into being does not die.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Right moviemaking
3 March 2000 | by (usa) – See all my reviews

A strange thing happened to me while watching this movie for the first time: About halfway thru, I lost the desire to pay attention to it. It's not that I lost interest, just that I lost the feeling of need or obligation to pay attention in order to get the most out of it.

Cinematic enlightenment? Or just fatigue?

Hmmm... probably a little of both, combined with the knowledge that it I can always watch it again.

Cinematic reincarnation!

This really is a different movie, and I can see it being played on my VCR time and time again, at times when I want to "watch something", but don't...

There's just so much to it, so much to think about, so much to see, that one time thru will only give a little sip. And I'm afraid that there are times when it does help to read the subtitles -- although much of the time there are no subtitles.

The thing about it is, rather than "teach" Buddhist philosophy, it "gives the experience". It follows its three characters on the path, and gives lessons on letting go.

There is a scene where a young boy returns to the grave of a bird he'd buried a few days before: Unable to let go of the bird, unable to accept death, he finds that yes, life goes on, but in ways that he was not ready to accept or understand! In an instant, he's startled by the cry of another bird, and falls from a ledge into a pool of water (there's a lot of water in this movie), where he thrashes about like he's drowning -- and then he stops trying to swim, and simply allows himself to float. Get it?

Lots of eye candy, lots of mind candy. If you're a Buddhist, or in any way interested in Buddhism, you must not miss it for anything! If however you're not interested in the least about Buddhist philosophy, but ARE interested in cinematic excellence, see it. It's a masterpiece!


29 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Where to find the DVD? moviereviewcomment
New Director's Edition DVD from Milestone tigersnest
Material Things ? l-kempson

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?