Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema) (2005) - Rotten Tomatoes

Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema) (2005)

Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

South Korean auteur Hong Sang-soo generally tells the same story twice, and his work often involves people working in the film industry. His sixth feature, Tale of Cinema, follows this pattern, but Hong adds a new wrinkle. In the first half, we're introduced to Sang-won (Lee Gi-woo of The Classic), who seems to be a ne'er-do-well, and happens to run into Yong-sil (Eom Ji-weon), whom he had a crush on back when they were in school. While she finishes out her workday, he goes to see a play. The two spend the evening together, getting very drunk. After an abortive effort at lovemaking ("Why insist when it doesn't work?" says Yong-sil), Sang-won tells Yong-sil that he'd like to "end with a flourish." She agrees, and the two forge a suicide pact. Their plan goes awry, and Sang-won is hospitalized. He returns home and has a big argument with his angry mother. We next see a new character, Tong-su (Kim Sang-gyeong of Memories of Murder and Hong's Turning Gate) as he exits a movie theater. It soon becomes clear that the first half of the Tale of Cinema is the short film that Tong-su has just watched, as part of a retrospective of the work of a peer from film school. The filmmaker has fallen ill and his classmates are having a get-together to raise money for his family. Tong-su doesn't seem interested in going until he runs into Yong-sil, the actress from the short film, who has had some success in the intervening years. He stalks her for a while, and eventually introduces himself and explains to Yong-sil that the filmmaker stole the story of the film from Tong-su's stories of his own life. Tale of Cinema was shown at the 2005 New York Film Festival. ~ Josh Ralske, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Sang-soo Hong
In Theaters:
MK2 Diffusion

News & Interviews for Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema)

Critic Reviews for Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema)

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (3)

There are filmmakers lurking here, and their involvement in the unfolding action highlights Hong's multilayered, self-deprecating self-portrait-and his ambivalent view of a milieu that is inescapably his own.

Full Review… | March 5, 2012
New Yorker
Top Critic

Hong, who reportedly always carries a notebook with him, is an excellent observer of the minutiae of daily life.

October 4, 2005
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

This one has a sheer simplicity and clarity.

Full Review… | September 26, 2005
Top Critic

...richly inventive and consistently fascinating filmmaking...

Full Review… | August 5, 2006
All Movie Guide

Emotionally honest in its late-bloomer humility... a love-story diptych whose two halves reflect and refract upon one another through the all-seeing eye of film itself.

Full Review… | October 8, 2005
Premiere Magazine

Captures the elusive, entrancing sway that the finest movies hold over our lives.

Full Review… | October 5, 2005
Lessons of Darkness

Audience Reviews for Geuk jang jeon (Tale of Cinema)


Bring on the bifurcated meta films! I was confounded by the first half and then the rug gets pulled out from under me and while it becomes clearer it's still bizarre and interesting as hell. The true main character is a first class weirdo who gets involved in some pretty awkward moments. I'm not sure if the criticism of life imitating art is all there is to themes. It reminds me of Rivette's Love on the Ground.

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