6.5/10
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Downfall (1997)

Chang (original title)
A young woman is tricked into prostitution, thinking she's going to sell beverages at a village store. She soon learns about the dark world of Korea's red-light districts, where a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Eun-Kyung Shin
Jeong-hyeon Han
Dong-joon Choi
Kyeong-sun Jeon
Byeong-kyeong Ahn
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yu-seon Yun
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Storyline

A young woman is tricked into prostitution, thinking she's going to sell beverages at a village store. She soon learns about the dark world of Korea's red-light districts, where a prostitute is exploited by johns, their pimps and society. She befriends one of her johns, a country bumpkin, who keeps in touch with her over the years. The film is a look at Korea's prostitution from the 1970s to the 1990s told through her story. Written by peter07

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13 September 1997 (South Korea)  »

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Downfall  »

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User Reviews

 
Mikio Naruse also might have made this!!
11 December 2005 | by (Montreal, Canada) – See all my reviews

The life of woman is an eternal issue both in the feminism and the macho camps, but this movie is not dealing with it as an issue but as a discourse. Why a trajectory of one normal prostitute's life can powerfully demonstrate the social milieu of the Korean past; and to what extent her life can be paralleled to the normal life in the same context?

These two questions are cast throughout this movie and no answer is sought. Only the process of its exploration and contemplation is intended and the Great Director Kwon-taek I'm concurrently maintains the suitable distance from the actual events in order to render the depth of objectivity.

His cinematography hyperboling the huge mountain cliff alludes to the great obstacle for a woman who comes to live a tattered life, and this is also one of the most important elements on the Korean traditional painting. The Korean traditional aesthetics become symbolically transferred into the traditional restraint of Korean society for a woman who had no choice but to take the path of a prostitute, and this metaphor becomes a brilliantly shining explanatory tool in the movie without any detailed lines.

A masterpiece of the maestro who has now come in front of a mirror in order to reflect the rear side of the contemporary society of Korea. If Mikio Naruse is still alive, he will definitely cast a jealousy on this work.


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