Friday, May 19, 2017

The Yellow Sea (황해) at Maridon Museum, May 25.

The 2010 thriller The Yellow Sea (황해) will play at the Maridon Museum on May 25, the fourth and final installment in this spring's Korean Film Series. A 2011 New York Times review provides a summary:
Written and directed by Na Hong-jin, “The Yellow Sea” follows Gu-nam as he descends into a nightmare that he helps create. The story takes off in Yanji, the capital of the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture, a wedge of China that borders North Korea and Russia. Initially, Gu-nam, an ethnic Korean (or chosun-juk), spends his time losing money at mahjongg, driving a cab or passed out in his squalid apartment, where a web of broken glass covering a framed wedding photo of him and his wife hints at the tragic misunderstanding that sets the story in fast, fast motion. His wife has left to find work in South Korea, and Gu-nam, bereft, angry, self-pitying, has built up a debt that he seems unlikely to work or gamble his way out of.

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When he can’t pay what he owes, he lands before a gangster, Myun-ga (Kim Yun-seok, in a tour de force performance), who will wipe out Gu-nam’s debt if he kills a man. Stoop-shouldered and somewhat sleepy, Myun-ga doesn’t look like much of a danger, but menace radiates off him, especially because he makes his offer in a dog market.
The movie starts at 6:00 pm and reservations are required to be made by phone: 724-282-0123. The Maridon Museum is an Asian art museum at 322 N. McKean St. in downtown Butler (map) that runs film series periodically throughout the year, in addition to art classes, book club meetings, and its regular exhibits.