Dealing with the events leading up to one of the tragedies in Korean history known as the Gwangju Massacre, "May 18th", directed by Kim Ji-hoon
, will be the second big-budget historical film released this year following "Hwang Jin Yi
", released earlier this month.
On May 18th, 1980 the government under then military general CHUN Doo-hwan, sent in troops to put down a civilian uprising. The repressive policies of general CHUN, who had ordered the shut down of universities, outlawed protests, censored the press, and arrested his political opposition, resulted in the Gwangju Uprising. Troops entered the city and fired into the crowds killing hundreds of civilians.
While several films have dealt with issues surrounding the Gwangju Massacre, including "The Old Garden
" (2006), "Peppermint Candy
" (1999), and "A Petal"
(1995), May 18th is the first to directly focus on the actual events leading up to that tragic day as experienced by Gwangju residents. The film is about Min-woo, played by Kim Sang-kyeong ("On the Occasion of Remembering the Turning Gate
", "Memories of Murder"
), who joins the citizen militia charged with protecting demonstrators against government violence.
Others in the talented cast include Lee Joon-gi
("The King and the Clown
"), Lee Yo-won
("Take Care of My Cat
"), Song Jae-ho
("Memories of Murder"
), Na Moon-hee
("You are my Sunshine"
) and veteran actor Ahn Sung-ki
. It is produced by Yoo In-taek ("A Single Spark"
) and is the second feature from director Kim, who made his debut with the comedy "Mokpo, Gangster's Paradise
" in 2004. It is being released by CJ Entertainment.
Nigel D'Sa (KOFIC)