The source story by Chunming Huang was uncredited, as Huang's works were banned in South Korea at the time. See more »
South Korean director/screenwriter Park Kwang Su directs a politically correct film which evenly mixes comedy with drama.
Chilsu and Mansu occupies an important status in the history of South Korean cinema. It was made in 1988, a crucial year for South Korea when it got an opportunity to showcase its importance on international arena by successfully hosting 24th summer Olympics. It was after this global sporting event that restrictions were lifted by the government in order to ease tensions which had troubled ordinary South Koreans. It is believed that South Korean cinema industry was one of the principal beneficiaries of this lifting of restrictions. As a film, Chilsu and Mansu is about the daily struggles of ordinary people to make sense of their lives in a hostile environment where unskilled workers do not have any voices of their own. It begins well with numerous comedy scenes from their daily lives but makes its point only when it takes a tough stand in the form of drama to highlight the plight of two of its leading characters who are beset by family problems. It is true that Chilsu and Mansu opened a new avenue for South Korean films in the world especially at film festivals but the enormous influence of American culture on ordinary South Koreans can easily be felt while watching this film. One gets to hear famous pop music tracks which were popular in late 1980s and numerous scenes from American cinema too have found a prominent place in this film. Chilsu and Mansu was directed by Park Kwang Su, a leading South Korean cinéaste and screenwriter who has also worked with Lee Chang Dong. He would go on to make other landmark films namely A single spark, Black Republic and To the starry island. Actor Park Joong-Hoon who plays the role of Chilsu would make a fresh appearance in "The Black Republic" directed by Park Kwang Su.
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