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DVD Talk review of 'Save the Green Planet'

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DVD Talk review of 'Save the Green Planet'

Old 09-20-05, 04:49 PM
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DVD Talk review of 'Save the Green Planet'

I read John Sinnott's DVD review of Save the Green Planet at http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?ID=17794 and...

I'm glad the movie finally made region 1 territory. It's a great flick. It is a shame that Koch didn't spring for the DTS and commentary tracks from the Korean SE.

One thing I noticed are a few typos:

(not important anymore)

I've seen worse, but I thought I'd point them out.

I also find it funny that you wrote the Korean names in three different fashions: Jang Jun-Hwan (capital H), Byeong-gu (small G) and Jae-yong Lee (family name last). Usually, you'll find it like 'Shin Ha-kyun' (with the family name first, and a small letter in the second part of the given name).

One last thing. The way you wrote it, the sentence makes it sound like this is Mr. Jang's first screenplay. He'd actually written Phantom: The Submarine along with Bong Joon-ho, who would later write and direct Memories of Murder.

I'm bored so that's why I'm picky, but great review nonetheless. I think I liked it more than you did, but then again I have a special affinity for Korean flicks.

Last edited by pat00139; 09-26-05 at 12:11 PM.
Old 09-20-05, 05:48 PM
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Thanks for pointing out the typos Pat....it's amazing how many errors slip by me. You should have seen it before I proofed it.

As for the names...I had a bit of a problem with them. They don't translate the credits on the disc, so I had to rely on other sources for the actor's names. I used IMDB and some web site that google turned up. One problem was that IMDB spelled the character names differently than they were written in the subtitles. So, I just sort of winged it. Am I correct in assuming that it should be Jang Jun-hwan and not Jang Jun-Hwan?

I didn't mean to imply that this was Jang's first script, so I rewrote the sentence in question.

Thanks for you comments. I really think that this film will become a cult classic if the word gets spread around a bit. It is a really unique film.

Last edited by videophile; 09-20-05 at 06:55 PM.
Old 09-20-05, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by videophile
Am I correct in assuming that it should be Jang Jun-hwan and not Jang Jun-Hwan?
Yup, as was stated above, family name first and second part of given name starts with small cap.

I didn't mean to imply that this was Jang's first script, so I rewrote the sentance in question.
Sentence.

The mixture of genres and the ending seem to put a lot of people off but this is one of my favorite Korean films. Original, inventive, funny, disturbing, this is what I watch movies for.

Last edited by eXcentris; 09-20-05 at 06:11 PM.
Old 09-20-05, 06:54 PM
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Have been holding out on getting this movie but after reading all the positive reviews, including yours, I decided to finally get it.
Old 09-20-05, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by eXcentris
Sentence.
D'oh!
Old 09-20-05, 10:39 PM
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What bugs me the most about people translating Korean names (and I don't mean you videophile, I mean the people that take Korean and change it into English) is that they can't seem to get the transliteration right sometimes. It just bugs the hell out of me. The 'jun' in Jang Jun-hwan (with a 'u') should be pronounced 'joon', but then sometimes the 'u', like in Jun Ji-hyun (both 'u's in this case) should be like the 'u' in butter. The 'u's in Jun Ji-hyun should actually be 'eo's: Jeon Ji-hyeon.

Just a small detail but it bugs the hell out of me. It creates pronunciation problems for nothing.

(Once again, videophile, I'm not attacking you, I'm attacking the people who transliterate the names in the first place.)

This is actually one of my fav Korean flicks as well. It's got biting satire and has some really funny moments, and a kick-ass ending. It never stops until the ending of the closing credits. You don't see that a lot.
Old 09-21-05, 07:16 AM
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I consider Save the Green Planet a must see. It has its competition, but I'd have to say it is my number one all-time favorite Korean film.

And while we're unloading some baggage here.....

I've noticed - and it's been a bit of a pet-peeve of mine for some time now - that professional critics of Asian cinema have not yet warmed to the genre-mixing, and also in others cases, the melodrama that often accompanies Asian films. I have no problem with either.

In a way, I see the genre-mixing, not as a sign of director/producer uncertainty as John and many, many others have put it, but more a desire to deliver to the audience a complete cinematic experience aka the best and greatest bang for your buck. Does it always work, certainly not, but again I see it as a deliberate cinematic style like any other as opposed to attributing it to shortcomings on the part of the filmmakers.

Likewise, melodrama I think also gets a bad rap with virtually all critics spitting it out like a dirty, four-letter word or at best with only reserved praise. While on the other hand, blank-faced, expressionless, minimalist, artsy acting is often hailed as deep and profound. I'd submit that for an actor doing melodrama well is as great, if not a greater challenge than the minimalist style. I remember thinking how great Anthony Wong was in the Infernal Affairs series with his low-key, reserved approach but then there was a scene where he has to deliver a big and sweeping emotional reaction to seeing someone blown up in a car and his performance in that one scene was awful.

And to continue the baggage drop, a third pet peeve would be the tendency of professional critics to refer to all Bollywood/Indian films that contain song & dance as musicals. Again, the song & dance is more a cultural thing and is inherent to the cinema. Once again too tying in with the desire to deliver the best bang for your buck. If I'm properly informed on this subject, I believe that for many years the backbone of popular music in India was the music from these films. However, calling them musicals I firmly believe is false and ill-informed, they are gangster films, and romance films, and family melodramas, and crime/cop films, and political/social films, and war films, and action films, and mysteries, and horror, and comedy, etc.,....and all with music, but they should not broadly be labelled as being musicals first and foremost (if at all). In my experience, the Indian fanbase of these films never refers to them as musicals. I know when I rent the ones that I watch the folks at the video store never ever answer "musical" when I ask what type of film, they always say "action", "romance", "comedy", "art-house", "social", etc. It just makes me cringe when a professional critic starts off their review of a Bollywood film with something like "in this latest blockbuster musical from Bollywood", etc. And I won't even get in to when a supposedly professional critic writes that the lead actor/actress in a Bollywood film was or maybe even wasn't a good singer.

Film can be such a great way to learn about other cultures that it just bothers me when foreign cinema is, and the proper phrasing escapes me right now so I'll just say "simplified" for American audiences. I guess what I'm trying to say is that instead of sort of an intolerance to a different style (as it might go against Hollywood conventions), I think viewers should approach it with more of an angle as to why a particular cinema is the way it is. Why do Japan/S. Korea/China often feature tragic endings?; why all the music in a Bollywood film; why the genre mixing often with indulgent comedy in the beginning with dark, seriousness late. I'll spare embarrassing the American public school system by not sharing how little time was spent in teaching me anything about Asia but I will say I've learned infinitely more about Korea (as just one example) in watching even as few as a handful of films than I learned in years of public schooling (or college for that matter).

And my arrow is not just pointed at the treatment of Asian cinema but European cinema. To give one example, the puritanical treatment and reaction to nudity/sex in European cinema. How about asking why Europeans are okay with it and conversely why Americans are not? I can't even imagine what the reaction of the general U.S. public would be to one particular scene in Alex de la Iglesia's "800 Bullets" (let's just say I could only have wished that I was that lucky as a kid).

I feel better now.
Old 09-21-05, 07:47 PM
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Originally Posted by flixtime
However, calling them musicals I firmly believe is false and ill-informed, they are gangster films, and romance films, and family melodramas, and crime/cop films, and political/social films, and war films, and action films, and mysteries, and horror, and comedy, etc.,....and all with music, but they should not broadly be labelled as being musicals first and foremost (if at all). In my experience, the Indian fanbase of these films never refers to them as musicals.
My Indian coworker refers to Bollywood movies as musicals. But I get the impression that he's not very fond of Indian-made movies.

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