Monday, February 18, 2008


Opening film: TWO GURUS IN DRAG by Yong Soon Min

by Jin Jane Kaisen (February 27)

by Soni Kum (March 5)

Opening: February 20, Bar opens 8 PM, Screening begins 9 PM

While our overseas Pinoy showbands (part of our huge OFW contingent abroad) have been dishing out that unique brand of folk-soul-ballad and rock-and-roll covers in five-star hotel lounges, salaried men’s pubs and pedestrians’ hangouts from Seoul to Busan, back home primetime Philippine television is being swept by the steady stream of soap operas made in the Land of the Morning Calm. Mind you, this Koreanobelas, dubbed of course in Pilipino, topbill NOT your ordinary Star Circle-breed Sandara Park-type of pretty but huhuhum talent, but with superstar mainstays from a variety of Koreanobelas such as the tearjerkers Endless Love Winter Sonata, Green Rose, and Stairway to Heaven, the sweet and bubbly Lovers in Paris, Oh Feel Young and Full House, to the historical epic Jewel in the Palace. It’s amazing how an entire Filipino household could suddenly feel cold one humid summer night by just watching an episode of Endless Love with its snowcapped setting, and their extremely attractive protagonists in six-layer winter clothes. What a way to satisfy a wish list that includes rolling in snow, wearing a leather jacket (without being mistaken for a stuntman or action star) and celebrating winter in wonderland.
Well, This Is Not a Koreanobela: A Film Trilogy is simply what it is, not a Koreanobela. But will take on episodic screenings for three succeeding Wednesdays of three Korean diasporic films beyond the radar of Nielsen Media Inc’s viewership monitoring scheme. Two Gurus in Drag by Yong Soon Min, Accentuation by Jin Jane Kaisen, and Foreign Sky by Soni Kum comprise the film trilogy which deals with related themes of separation, exile, expatriate life, (im)migration, (re)location and/or travel abroad. Their films also allow us the privilege of privacy, peeping through deep personal experiences impacted on the lives of these individuals, and how as film makers these experiences have influenced and defined their creative process and shaped their concepts of identity, nationality, conflict, love, romance, loyalty and home. The opening film, Two Gurus in Drag by Yong Soon Min (with Allan de Souza), screening this Wednesday, is a performance installation project that was inspired by John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s famous collaborative Bed-In for Peace event attended by close friends including Timothy Leary at Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, Canada, in May 26, 1969. Of particular focus is Yong Soon Min and Allan de Souza’s re-staging of the ‘bed-in’ performance to protest the U.S. bombing of Afghanistan and the invasion and war on Iraq. Yong Soon Min immigrated to America in 1960 at the age of seven from South Korea. She is now Assistant Professor of Studio Art at University of California-Irvine. Ranging in media from photography to installations, her work has been exhibited in the U.S. and abroad, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art/New York City, Camerawork Gallery/London, Kumho Museum/Seoul, Fourth Baguio Art Festival/Philippines, Museum Folkwang/Germany, and in two Havana Biennials/Cuba. More on Jin Jane Kaisen’s Accentuation (February 27) and Soni Kum’s Foreign Sky (March 5) at next Wednesdays spam editions. for updates:

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