Social&Human Interest Divided Nation
Kim Ryun-hee, a North Korean housewife, was forced to come to South Korea and became its citizen against her will. She tried to smuggle herself out and even sought political asylum at the Vietnamese Embassy but all in vain. As her seven years of struggle to go back to her family in North Korea continues, the political absurdity hinders her journey back to her loved ones. The life of her family in the North goes on in emptiness, and she fears that she might become someone, like a shadow, who exists only in the fading memory of her family.
Kim Ryun-hee is trapped between the South and the North. Following her struggle to go back to her family in the North, I realised that our understanding of the defectors was too simplistic. The journey of NK defectors cannot be a happy ending even though they arrive in the South. They are still drifting on the still-cold river of division, disconnected both from the North and the South. So I wanted to raise awareness about this absurdity that hinders a humanitarian desire to be together with her loved ones. Kim often thinks how wonderful it would be if all these things were available in the North. But a tearful Kim says, “Freedom and material and other lures of any kind, they are not as important to me as my family and my home.”
Born in 1971, Seung-jun Yi is the multi-awards-winning director of ‘Planet of Snail’ (Best Feature Documentary Award, IDFA 2011). His filmography includes ‘Wind on the Moon’(2014), ‘Can I say something’(2015), ‘Children of God’(2008, NETPAC Award, Jeonju International Film Festival / Best Documentary Award, Eastern Asia Producers’ Forum), ‘Like Wild Flowers – the story of two women’(2007, Best Documentary Award, Korea Producers & Directors Association).