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

7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 866 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 »

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

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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
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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

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Drama

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23 September 1989 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

Why Did Bodhi-Dharma Leave for the East?  »

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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.
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User Reviews

 
A movie (and moving) meditation that addresses the quest for the true self.
15 February 2001 | by (Lawrence, KS, USA) – See all my reviews

Many people have, at one time or another, asked the questions "Who am I, why am I here, what is the purpose of life?" This film addresses these issues as well as, and probably better then, any movie has since the film adaptation of Siddhartha or the more recent Little Buddha. Truly wonderful cinematography, acting, and a storyline that weaves traditional Zen stories/analogies into the works. The absorbing and meditative quality of the film itself makes it a classic work of Zen and film.


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