South Korean Cinema: Week 2 - History on Film

South Korean Cinema

April 12, 2023

South Korean Cinema: An Unconventional Crash Course

The past hundred years on the Korean peninsula are some of the most tumultuous of any place in the world—and cinema has been intertwined with this history since the medium’s arrival in Korea. In week two, we will briefly overview Korean political and film history to explore the following questions: How have Korean history and politics shaped the course of Korean filmmaking, and vice versa? How has filmmaking functioned to remember, rebel against, and reimagine the political world of South Korea? To do so, we will take a look at the post-war masterpiece Aimless Bullet (1961), the cheekily dissident filmmaking of March of Fools (1975), and the groundbreaking documentary Habitual Sadness (1997).


Class Pass including all classes and screenings: $120 Sustainer | $100 Regular | $75 Member
Individual Talks: $25 Sustainer | $15 Regular | $10 SIFF member

Buy Tickets: In Person     Buy Tickets: Virtual

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7:00–9:00pm PT
SIFF Film Center (live) + Streamed via Zoom Webinar


March of Fools is available to watch with English subtitles on Youtube. Content Advisory: Depiction of suicide.

Habitual Sadness can be rented at Scarecrow Video and is not available for streaming in the United States. Content advisory: Discussions of rape and sexual violence.


Hannah Baek is an independent film programmer specializing in Asian cinema and interactive film screenings. She received a master’s degree from Harvard’s Regional Studies East Asia program, where she studied gender queerness in the "Dark Ages" of 1970s South Korean cinema. Most recently, she has worked with the Sundance Film Festival, the Harvard Film Archive, MUBI, SIFF, and Spectacle Theater.