The Korean Wedding Chest (Die koreanische Hochzeitstruhe) (2009)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
Critic Reviews for The Korean Wedding Chest (Die koreanische Hochzeitstruhe)
It is a rare chance to see the stunning, quiet work of Ottinger, whose films tell us only what we need to know. Nothing more, nothing less.
Tenderly observed personal documentary on Korean wedding customs.
Audience Reviews for The Korean Wedding Chest (Die koreanische Hochzeitstruhe)
I should have known right from the start that the filmmaker couldn't deliver a meaningful film when she starts off with a narrated fable of her own. Why would a documentarian need to fabricate a fable about marriage? If you care a whit about the culture you are documenting wouldn't you employ one from the culture you are observing? Far less artsy, I guess. The severe camera "work" (entirely static) makes the film feel, at turns: staged, voyeuristic, superficial, calculating, and ultimately fetishistic. This filmmaker professes to examine old and new rituals, and she does, but by skimming along the surface and narrowly gazing at her subjects she holds them up as oddities and objects of ridicule. People in the theater laughed, but it just didn't feel right to be laughing most of the time. There is an utter lack of context and no understanding of the Korean culture displayed. Despite some beautiful shots and amusing scenes, the film is a disjointed and disengaged tourist's travelogue at best. It's highlight is a game of rock-paper-scissors between two girls at the wedding; the loser gets slapped in the face. The little girl wins and gently cuffs the bigger girl, then the bigger girl wins and smacks the little girl, making her head spin. Looking around at many of the Koreans in the audience after the film, it seemed like they had been smacked, not gently cuffed.
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