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2009/04/24 | 233 views | Permalink | Source

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Park Chan-wook and others; That Book: 270 pp., 12,000 won

Award-winning director Park Chan-wook is making headlines with his upcoming film "Thirst", and presents in novel form the original story that he co-wrote with scriptwriter Jeong Seo-kyeong and novelist Choi In.

"This piece was inspired by Emile Zola's `Therese Raquin' and is a product of two countries, three centuries and four authors", said Park, and indeed Zola's 19th-century realism and the Western vampire legend melt naturally and eerily to fit into a story of modern Korea.

The book reads quickly and easily even though it is replete with lush, descriptive details. The frill-free prose gives flight to the imagination as it limits dialogue and concentrates on depicting the psyche of a troubled man.

Sang-hoon, a devout Catholic priest, volunteers for a dangerous medical experiment. During the process he contracts mysterious blood and turns into a ravenous vampire, and starts breaking the 10 Commandments. He even becomes romantically involved with his friend's wife, Tae-ju, who, sick of her miserable marriage, urges him to kill her husband.

The movie is slated for release April 30.

-Lee Hyo-won

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