North Korean Film Madness

2011, Society  -  11 min Leave a Comment
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In 2011 VICE went to North Korea to try and penetrate the Korean Feature Film Studio, the state-run film production facility west of Pyongyang: a sprawling lot that at its height produced around 40 films a year.

You could say that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il had two primary obsessions: maintaining nuclear weapons capability as a means of protecting his "hermit kingdom," and thwarting pressure from outside forces like America and the rest of the industrialized world to open his country to modern things like electricity... and he was obsessed with film.

He loved movies. It's rumored that he had one of the largest private film collections in the world. His favorite film was "Gone with the Wind" and his favorite actress was Elizabeth Taylor.

He was a film collector and bona fide cinephile, but he was much more. He was everything really. He was a director, a producer, a financier, a costume maker, set designer, screenwriter, cameraman, sound engineer... and he was also a film theorist.

Watch the full documentary now (playlist - 23 minutes)