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Painted Fire (2002)
"Chihwaseon" (original title)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 2,003 users   Metascore: 78/100
Reviews: 17 user | 27 critic | 21 from Metacritic.com

In a time of political and social unrest in nineteenth-century Korea, an uncouth, self-taught painter explores his natural talent amidst the repressive world around him.

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Title: Painted Fire (2002)

Painted Fire (2002) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Jang Seung-up
Sung-kee Ahn ...
Kim Byung-Moon
Ho-jeong Yu ...
Mae-hyang
...
Jin-jong
...
So-woon
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jin-seo Yoon
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Storyline

The struggles of an artist. Jang Seung-up (1843-1897), also called Owon, focusing on the years 1882 to 1897, when Korea was in political upheaval, caught between China and Japan, the conservative dynasty dying, and peasant revolt at hand. Jang, born poor, has genius; a merchant, Kim, becomes his patron, finding him a teacher. Jang must convince others that a commoner can have talent, then move beyond his ability to copy old masters and find his own style. He's bedeviled by a temper and alcohol, arguments with patrons as he seeks commissions, and relationships with kisaeng, particularly Mae-hyang, that start and stop. It's the life of a restless spirit producing great art. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

korea | spirit | peasant | kisaeng | japan | See more »

Taglines:

The Life of Painter Jang Seung-up

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 May 2002 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

Painted Fire  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$9,302 (USA) (14 February 2003)

Gross:

$59,413 (USA) (20 June 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Chosen by "Telerama" (France) as one of the 10 best pictures of 2002 (#10) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Well-made biopic
2 February 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This film, winning Im Kwon-Taek the Best Director at Cannes in 2002 (tied with P.T. Anderson for Punch-Drunk Love), is about a 19th century Korean painter with a commoner's roots and significant impact on Korean painting. One of the strengths?of the film is that Im tries to help us see with the eye of a painter, so we see multiple scenes and objects which help our drunken painter friend, Jang Seung-up (Choi Min-shik),?receive inspiration.

The costumes and the art direction are all impressive and the acting is even along being good. It's not a movie that moved me, but it was one that made me think about art and what it means to find your own voice in it. That's pretty cool. It's also interesting to see a version of Korea during those times right before the turn of the century, where Chinese and Japanese powers are both in Korea and the Chosun kingdom is coming to an end. More than one revolution and political ideology are gathered in the film, but are never the center. It's firmly on the painter.

In the end, it's a well made film about the life of a painter. But it doesn't exactly have the regular three-act structure plot, so you have to be able to take a non-standard Hollywood story to watch it. Yay for art! 8/10


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