Hello Korean film fans!
My name is Simon McEnteggart and I currently live and work in Ilsan, a suburb of Seoul, in South Korea.
I work as a freelance journalist writing about Korean cinema and currently write as a film columnist for Groove Korea magazine, as well as having written several articles for the Korean Film Council (KOFIC). Please see below for some examples of articles and interviews.
My love affair with Korean cinema began when I was in university in England, when I took a module called ‘Asian Cinema.’ In all honesty the title was quite misleading as the professor focused mostly on Chinese cinema, but there was an opportunity to discuss Korean output. Coincidentally, at the same time there was an Asian Cinema Festival at my local cinema which featured some of the more contemporary Korean films – including director Kim Ji-woon’s (김지운) A Bittersweet Life (달콤한 인생) (2005). From that moment I was hooked.
A few years later, I moved to Korea and discovered that the films appearing in the UK were only a fraction of the output the Korean film industry was producing. After a couple of years exploring the country and experiencing the culture of Korea for myself – as well as watching lots of films – I decided to start this website in the hopes of providing information to English speakers who wish to learn more about the wondrous variety of films coming from the Land of the Morning Calm.
Article in Korean Cinema Today, Vol. 8: “What Makes A Human? Korean Documentaries Delve Into Universal Questions.”
Furthermore, in England I was a film theory and criticism associate lecturer at university level for 3 years. I taught on modules including History of Cinema, Film Theory and Criticism, and British Cinema.
I also have published work in Second Takes: Critical Approaches to the Film Sequel. The chapter, entitled ‘Sequelizing the Superhero: Postmillennial Anxiety and Cultural “Need” explores how superheroic characters and narratives help, through allegory, to reinforce cultural identity during times of national crisis.
As a student, I have completed a BA in Film and Media Studies (1st Class Hons), with a dissertation entitled, ‘The American Superhero as the Embodiment of Religious and Social Crisis‘. The paper focused on exploring the ideological allegories within Superman (1978), Batman (1989), and Spider-Man (2002). This work also won the award for best dissertation in the media and arts school that year.
In completing the MA in Film and Cultural Theory, the dissertation explored culture and ideology in three American films post-9/11. Post-9/11 Cinema – American Ideology in Question analysed three different ideological areas – identity, religion, and terrorism – within The 25th Hour, Kingdom of Heaven, and Munich.
I hope you enjoy the site and find the information here useful. Don’t forget to sign up to the facebook and twitter account services (on the top right of this page) for regular updates regarding the Korean film industry, and please feel free to send me an email/message if you have any queries.