Too Young To Die (Region-All)
Product DescriptionOriginal title: Chugodo Choa
Starring: Park Chi-Gyu, Lee Soon-Ye
Director: Park Jin-Pyo
Studio: Yeung-Eum Sa / Dae-Gyung DVD
Rating: 18 and Up
About This DVD
A man meets a woman. They fall in love, then have passionate sex. Too Young to Die has every element a conventional romantic comedy should have except these people are in their 70s. By revealing the specific details of the real sex life of people in their silver years, this semi-documentary distinguishes itself from ordinary romantic comedy with its bold treatment of an ignored topic.
The filmic career of this independent digital feature about an elderly couple in love has followed an unusual arc. It began at the pinnacle of respectability, being selected to screen in the Critics' Week section at the 2002 Cannes International Film Festival. After receiving a number of very positive reviews, it went on to be selected for the Toronto International Film Festival's showcase of Korean cinema, and then received a special grant from the government-supported Korean Film Commission to help finance the film's transfer to 35mm film for a release in Korea. Then, alas, the film was submitted to the nation's Media Ratings Board, where it was judged unfit for public viewing and banned from release in ordinary theaters.
Too Young To Die is based on the true story of Park Chi-gyu and Lee Soon-ye, a man and woman in their early seventies who met, fell in love, and then rediscovered sex. The couple, who play themselves in the movie, seem little different from a couple in their twenties. They tease each other, fret about their hair, take snapshots of themselves, argue over trifles, and leap into bed with unabashed frequency. Indeed, watching them forces you to rethink all your stereotypes of what it is to be old.
First-time director Park Jin-pyo has filmed this work with great skill, humor, and tact. If his film seems shocking, it is because it challenges the narrow attitudes that many people have towards the old. Many treat the elderly as if their feelings have grown dim, just as people might lose their hearing. Watching this film is like a shock of cold water. And yet surely no one, not even the people who banned it, could look at it and call it pornographic.
Government censorship of film was abolished in South Korea in 1995. In its place was put a board of civilians -- schoolteachers, lawyers, film directors, critics, businessmen -- appointed to choose ratings for films scheduled for release. Under the leadership of veteran film director Kim Su-yong, the board has taken on rather more responsibility than was provided for by law, deciding which films should be released, and which shouldn't. After a court decision ruled that their practice of denying ratings to films they didn't like was unconstitutional, they began giving a new rating -- "restricted" -- which obligates films to be screened in special adult theaters which currently do not exist.
Films which capture images and ideas that challenge our thinking and make us see the world anew are rare and valuable. A work like Too Young To Die is one of the most eloquent arguments that can be made for the influence cinema can have on people and society. It raises questions about the efficacy of the system when perhaps the most important Korean film made in 2002 is judged to be unfit for viewing by those in their twenties, thirties, or even in their seventies.
|Audio Format:||Dolby Digital 5.1 & DTS|
|Video Format:||Anamorphic 1.85:1|
|Special Features:||Making Film, Making Poster, Interview, Music Video, Trailer|
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