7.8/10
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Shi (2010)

Unrated | | Drama | 11 February 2011 (USA)
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A sixty-something woman, faced with the discovery of a heinous family crime and in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease, finds strength and purpose when she enrolls in a poetry class.

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23 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Mija
...
Jongwook
Hira Kim ...
M. Kang
...
Kibum's father
Myeong-shin Park ...
Heejin's mother
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yong-taek Kim
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Storyline

A sixty-something woman, faced with the discovery of a heinous family crime and in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease, finds strength and purpose when she enrolls in a poetry class.

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Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

11 February 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Poetry  »

Box Office

Budget:

KRW 1,300,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$18,900 (USA) (11 February 2011)

Gross:

$355,044 (USA) (12 August 2011)
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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lee wrote the lead character specifically for Jeong-hie Yun, a major star of Korean cinema from the 1960s and 1970s. Yun later expressed satisfaction with how the role differed from what she typically played in the past: "I've always had the desire to show people different aspects of my acting and (Lee) provided me with every opportunity to do just that." Prior to Poetry, the last film Yun appeared in was Manmubang ("Two Flags") from 1994. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fokus på Film fra Sør (2011) See more »

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Tears In Heaven
4 April 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

POETRY (dir. Chang-dong Lee) POETRY is a slow-moving character drama which is disarmingly powerful, yet haunting and meditative. Mija is a sixty-six year old suffering from early onset Alzheimer's disease who lives in a rural Korean town with her indolent teen aged grandson, Jongwook. In an attempt to stimulate her cognitive abilities, she enrolls in a poetry class. Things are looking up until she learns that her grandson was involved in the suicide of one of his classmates. Jongwook and some of his friends had been sexually abusing a classmate, and this drove the young girl to take her life. Soon Mija is contacted by the fathers of the boys and learns that they want to pay the girl's mother a large sum of money to keep her from going to the authorities. In her poetry class at the community center Mija learns that in order to create poetry one must learn, 'to observe', 'to notice', and 'to witness'. The need for a heightened awareness or sensibility becomes the compelling dichotomy of the film. We observe that the fathers only focus on the ramifications of the incident on the lives of their sons, while Mija becomes moved and deeply empathizes with the loss of this innocent young girl to her family and the community. And, in the end Mija forces her grandson to face up to his responsibility, and she also constructs a loving and heartfelt poetic eulogy for the young girl. And, in a remarkable way of relating these two crucial events, the character of Mija is not even present as the actions unfold. Director, Chang-dong Lee, delivers a wonderful film which touches on a wide range of difficult subjects; poetry, dementia, sexual abuse and suicide, and casts an elderly semi-retired Korean actress as the star of the film. However, these kinds of mature topics and deliberate presentation are out of favor in Hollywood and unpopular with contemporary film audiences. I'm afraid that this film will never garner much commercial success, but if you take the time 'to witness', you will enjoy a truly rewarding cinematic experience.


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