Since the need of privacy has required the revolution of technologies, our living conditions changed a lot. Home, community is not the center of our social life any more. We have huge entertainment markets, we have legal system takes responsibilities to the whole country, so the community cannot be the judge of people’s life, and cannot be the center of people’s life. When we talk about home, it becomes a place for the individuals have intimate relationships to live in, and live in an intimate way.This is what I learned from my Intimacy and Technology class. However, if there’s a place like Dogville, all the rules are gonna be broken. Honestly, Dogville is the most shocking movie that I have never watched before.

Actually, I was a little late on the day we watched this movie(world screen Thurs), so the very first scenes to me are just some people are doing a play in a theater, of course, latter, I realized that is exactly the movie!!If we can accept on every season’s fashion show, the designers refresh our cognition of tendency and construct new concepts of makeups, dresses, high heels, handbags…, it is still a little hard to accept the small town that Lars von Trier constructs to us. It really cost me some time to adjust myself into the movie, to make myself believe that the white painted outlines are the walls, the word ‘Gooseberry Bushes’ stands for the real bushes, and the sound effect also accompanies with the non-existent objects. Trier did a so impressive work, and broke so many rules of the cinema fashion. Not a Hollywood style, not a box office aimed movie, but strong enough to blow your mind. Dogville is set in the 1930s, and considered to be ‘a symbol of any small towns in the U.S.’, so some critics accuse this movie has ‘strongly anti-American message’. However, the actors just act on the stage, that takes the audience to see the real face of cinema–acting. No matter which big star plays role in the movie, no matter how amazing the scenes and the sound effect are, films are still all about acting. Trier brings the real face of film back to us, and makes us face the questions that the movie tries to tell.

In the 1930s, a small town is like a community, that’s the center of people’s social life and the judge of everything. People who live there would like to be engaged in that community, would like to follow the rules of the community. That is just like what Grace did. No matter where she comes from, what she experienced, day after day, she’s willing to get involved in Dogville’s life. She tries her best to help others to prove her value, then the residents accept her, but when she breaks some rules, they abandon her, cheat on her, and even abuse both her body and soul. Dogville is a ‘trap’ for Grace, that’s a place saved her before, destroyed her later, and taught her a lesson finally-“If there is one town that the world would be better without, it’s Dogville.” When it comes to a small town, it must has something in common. It seems a place out of law, but easily under control, the majority is the judge of anything, it can make you become the hero or the public enemy. Sometimes I think Dogville may be the ultimately cruel place in the world, people live there have the faith but no faith, they have their bodies alive but no lives, that’s some way some people live, in Dogville, in the world.

Like a refreshing fashion show, Lars von Trier refreshes the fashion of cinema…

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Christian Dior Spring Summer 2007

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Buddhism

戒無悟轮回

PreceptNon-existenceEnlightenmentReincarnation

Those terms above are some main concepts in Buddhism, backing to Kim ki-duk’s movie Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, and Spring, we can see how the Buddhism concepts reveal a man’s life.

Spring: the fish died – Transgression 破戒to violate the precepts

The little boy(a Buddhist) plays tricks on some little animal, unfortunately the fish died. Though he tried to save its life as the master asked, the Transgression starts, when he was a little child. And the master just watched what the boy did without saying a word, but latter, the master use the same way as the boy did to the animals in order to teach him a lesson. This is the way Buddhists always do when they want to tell or teach something, this is why in Buddhism, meditation is an important lesson to them all, no matter what level they have already reached.

Ten Precepts
The ten kinds of good behavior, the first five of which are also observed by lay practitioners.
1. not killing (unintentional, child’s curious)
2. not stealing
3. no improper sexual behavior (such as adultery, etc.)
4. no false speech
5. no consumption of alcohol
6. not eating after noon (one day one meal, no food from noon till tomorrow’s sunrise)
7. not watching dancing, singing and shows ;
8. not adorning oneself with garlands, perfumes and ointments
9. not using a high bed
10. not receiving gold and silver

Summer: the young girl comes – Transgression, violate the precept again

No improper sexual behavior (such as adultery, etc.) 色戒

When the girl comes to the temple, we can see those two young people start a chasing game, and finally, they reach each other’s heart and body. In the movie, there’s no certain scenes show that whether the master knows their transgression or not, but Buddhism believes that if something is going to happen, it must happen one day, nothing can stop it, and it must lead to some result. If the killing of the fish is the start, then comes with the sexual behavior, and something must be waiting ahead.

Autumn: murder the wife – Transgression

not killing (intentional, take revenge) 杀戒

This time is the real killing,the intentional one, the most serious one in the young man’s life, and also a turning point of his Buddhist life and ordinary life both.

-curious -> the fish died
-desire of sex ->leave ->murder
-the master asks the young man to cave Chinese characters (the Buddhist scriptures) ->helps him to do lessons,meditation, enlightenment
the master puts 閉(close) on his eyes, ears, nose, and mouth-> no desire, nonexistence, reincarnation

By caving the Buddhist scriptures, the master finished his teaching lessons, the rest lessons should be meditated by the young man himself. If a master has some missions, one of them is to help ordinary people to enlighten. In some Buddhism stories, a master always dies when he thinks that’s the time for his death, at that time, they died peacefully without desires, complains…they believe the death is a start of reincarnation.

Winter: Reason – Results 因果报应
Meditation – Enlightenment

無 Nonexistence, emptiness, no desire

Uncover enlightenment
Awakening- To experience enlightenment
To acquire a valid understanding of something
To understand or comprehend a matter; To understand an experiential reality through reason

Through the whole winter, the young man finished the beginning of enlightenment finally.

And spring: the young man getting old, a new baby comes -> Reincarnation

Buddha always sits at somewhere higher look at everything happens.

Like four seasons change by the time, the cycles of life change as well, we never know if the life that the master experienced as the same as the young man, but the cycles of reincarnation must follow some rules, to someone, somewhere

Songgwangsa Temple, Gwangju, Jeollanam-do,S.Korea

Not like Chinese and Japanese, Korean Buddhism is full of concept of harmony, from the temple’s design to the Buddha’s figure. Songgwangsa temple is one of the oldest temple in S.Korea.

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Sorry I Love You OST: Nun-yi-kkot / 눈의 꽃

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The actor Lee Joon-ki of King and the Clown as the representative of the filmmakers speaking to the president.

Korea’s screen productions have been very popular among Asian countries in the past few years, and it caught the world’s attention by winning at international film festivals in recent years. The film making policy is one of the major reasons for the rapid development of Korean screen. Since the first time South Korea launched their film protection policy in 1970, it has been 35 years that Korean movie theaters are required to screen Korean movies for at least 146 days each year. Thanks to the strong political support from the government and financial support from local companies,  the film market began to develop dramatically and became a main force in the world’s cinema market. In the year of 2006, under the pressure from Hollywood filmmakers, the president of Korea announced that the days for local films sits in theater should be reduced to 73 days. After the regulation launched, thousands of residents and movie stars protest against this policy. It is reported that some protesters carried a coffin representing the death of Korean cinema. The actor Lee Joon-ki of King and the Clown as the representative of the filmmakers spoke to the president directly.

Record year

Korea’s cinema has been enjoying an unprecedented booming domestically and on the international stage. Its films took a record 49.5% share of the local market last year. Exports more than doubled, and record amounts of money were poured into the industry. Musa (The Warrior), made in 2001, broke all records in terms of cost, production and challenges of shooting.

The number of foreign films screened fell to 355 last year, from 427 in 2000, according to data from the state-run film watchdog, the Korea Media Rating Board.

Western known V.S. Asian Known

Korean directors such as Kim Ki-duk are well known by western people, but most of the directors, stars are well known by local people and Asian people. In fact, S.Korean TV shows( drama) has been popular among Asian countries for many years. From my experience, I summary some highlights of Korean dramas as following:

Contemporary Korean TV shows(drama)

Highlights of Korean dramas:

Music

Colour

Story (tears/laughs)

Duration (45min per episode,16-24episodes)

Strong cultural background (domestic & international)

Generally speaking, Korean screen producers try very hard to make the show perfect, from the scripts to the music, lighting, casts, and costuming. They focus on every single detail to make the show ‘in-style’. Basically, I divide Korean shows into ‘tears’ style and ‘laughs’ style. As I said, before I started to watch Korean shows, I never thought a drama show can torture your heart like that, and no one( audience) can escape or survive from the trap of sadness which is set by the director. On the other hand, some shows based on comics are quite funny, always tell a love story, so most of them are comedy romance, or some shows which last for almost 8/10 seasons like American shows always tell a family story based on Korean people’s daily life. Music in the shows always mix pop music with Korean traditional folk music(strings,bronze…), or just the melodies match the comics background, and sometimes they use foreign songs to add a little different taste. If you think S.Korean shows are like American shows that shot in a certain area, you would be wrong. Some Korean shows are shoot within Korea, but the places must be the most beautiful ones like sea shores, famous travel spots, and the big house of big cities, of course, the ‘tears’ stories would be in poor living areas (but the show makers still can make that place look lovely). Personally, I think making the shootings in fair-view places is a good way to develop tourism marketing. Moreover, some shows usually are some parts of the shows are shoot overseas, this is absolutely is a tendency, as far as I known( the dramas that I’ve watched), the oversea countries cover Melbourne, Sydney/Australia,France, China, Thailand, Macao, Bali, Greece, Austria, U.S.A, and so on. In the show shoot overseas, the characters always have international education background, or take a trip to foreign country, or the immigrates, after some time, they go back to Korea, and then some story happens. Apparently, the colors in Korean shows are really stunning, lovely, wonderful…because of the beautiful views and also the indoor decoration. Watching Korean shows would be an amazing visual journey.

Then, I’d like to introduce some popular Korean shows in recent years, and which are my favorites:

Sorry, I love you (2004, 16episodes,KBS)

Story: Abandoned chi

Producer:Jung Sung Hyo

Director: Lee Hyung Min

Writer: Lee Kyung Hee

Style: Tears

Featured Overseas Contury: Melbourne

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Full House (summer 2004, 16 episodes,MBC)

Based on Korean comics by Woo Sooyon

Producer: Song Hye-gyo

Style: Laughs

Comedy romance

Featured Overseas Country: Thailand

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Palace /Princess Hours(2006, 24 episodes,MBC)

Based on Korean comics by Park Soh-hee

Producer:Hwang In-roiStyle: Laughs

Comedy Romance, Cinderella style with Korean royal backgrounds

Featured Overseas Country : Macao

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Classic Series-Yoon Suk-ho’s Four Seasons Series, four different love stories…

Director: Yoon Suk-ho

Spring Waltz (2006,KBS)-endless love,brings you hope just like spring does…

It’s the final drama of Yoon’s Four Seasons series, because the start of this series is Autumn, and the saddest story of all four, in the last one, Yoon tries to tell people ‘the essences of love are hope, tolerance, and honesty…The childhood sweetheart theme again. The director uses different degrees of yellow, pink, blue and green to match the theme of spring, and part of the shootings are taken in Austria. The OST- One Love is as gentle as spring.

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Summer Scent(2003, KBS)-rains in summer take you to a wonderland of love…

A story of heart transplant: The main actor finds that when he comes close to a girl, his heart beats faster, he thought may he has a crush to that girl. Meanwhile the girl feels the same thing, and in fact, the girl’s heart was transplanted from the guy’s dead ex-girl friend’s…Falling in love the the same heart?! But once you fall in love, your heart never tells lies…

Again, Yoon takes us with his visual journey of Korea in the rain, may in Yoon’s view, the scent of summer is the scent of rain. A little change of the childhood sweetheart theme, but the two hearts are still familiar to each other . Summer, a season rains a lot, but you never know if next rain can bring two hearts get together…

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Autumn Fairy Tale (2000,KBS)-some time, when love faces death…

The beginning of Yoon’s seasonal series, the saddest story that I’ve seen in Korea dramas. When this drama released in Asia, the waves of Korean drama officially started. And I believe, in the year of 2000, every Asian family contributed their tears for this drama, from the beginning to the end, again, no one escaped.

Childhood sweetheart theme begins, this is Yoon’s ‘the theme of favorite’ and the major theme of seasonal series. But as the only one series ends with death, it really shocks people’s hearts.

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Winter Sonata (2002, KBS)- love is like pure snow, and must be completed by true lovers…

Still, childhood sweetheart, actually they were high school classmates, no promise, not too much communication, until you disappeared without saying goodbye…but I still keep you in my heart, on my engagement day I think I saw you. When you really stand in front of me, you are my friend’s boyfriend…

A story starts with winter, ends with spring, after all, a happy ending. This my favorite of all four, because winter is my favorite season, and of course, the snow…

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