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Horror Movie to Present Different Kind of Fear

2004/07/19 | 153 views | Permalink | Source

By Kim Tae-jong
Staff Reporter

Most horror movies use ghosts or monsters to scare you. But according to Kong Soo-chang, director of the upcoming movie "R-Point", fear comes from anxiety or pressure of an enclosed place or situation, not just from typical villains.

"That's why many teenage horror films are set in high schools where teenagers feels stress from everyday life", said Kong, who also wrote the screenplay.

In his debut film, "R-Point", set in Vietnam War, Kong tries to show the fear soldiers felt in the war where they had to fight enemies while being overtaken with their own anxiety to survive in unfamiliar surroundings.

The film is a fictional account of a group of soldiers who try to search for their missing comrades on an island called "R-Point" (Romeo Point), an army term referring to the place where their search effort is operated from.

Though the mysterious islet is a point of strategic importance, it is notorious for its nickname, "Jungle of Ghosts", since many people were massacred or went missing there. The islet is located 80 kilometers southwest of Ho Chi Mihn City, Vietnam.

In the movie, first lieutenant Choi Tae-in, played by actor Kam Woo-sung, leads his search team to find 18 missing soldiers. But the question is how the soldiers, who were believed to be dead, can keep sending SOS signals for six months. And when they set out for the "R-Point", Choi and his crew tap into the secrets the islet hides.

Although it adopts a mixture of both genres of horror and war flicks, the movie aims to present a different kind of fear from conventional teenage horror tales and war epics like "Taegukgi" or "Silmido".

"The only hope the soldiers had in the war-torn country must have been to survive and get back home safely", said Kong. "So, I also wanted to add a sense of sorrow and grief of the victims in the movie".

Kong has worked on several screenplays, including the 1992 war flick "White Badge", the 1999 mystery thriller "Tell Me Something" and horror movie "Ring Virus", also from 1999.

For his new movie, Kong had to stay in Vietnam and Cambodia for about one year to do on-site research and then he spent two years gathering as many stories and scenario works related to the war as possible before he was able to begin shooting the film.

With a comparatively high budget for a horror movie of about 4 billion won, it was shot on location for three months in the jungles of Vietnam.

While making the film, Kang thought of the war in Iraq and the South Korean troop dispatch to the Middle Eastern country.

Kong said war is like a "vicious circle" and was really sad to hear that we will repeat the tragic history again after the Vietnam War. He hopes his movie will give people a chance to think about the government's decision to send young people to the dangerous country.

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