COMRADE KIM GOES FLYING
directed by Kim Gwan Hun, Nicholas Bonner, Anja Daelemans (Belgium, North Korea, United Kingdom 2012)
LC rating: 3/5
I didn't realize this at the time, but this is a British-Belgian-North Korean co-production. It still came across to me as somewhat propagandized, and the fact that it was actually a cooperative effort makes it, weirdly, even more politically charged. As a movie, it has a vapid Technicolor feel to it, but our perception of it is additionally colored by the knowledge of its circumstances, the humor that results unintentionally from cultural differences, and the sheer fact of its being shot entirely in North Korea. As a result, I'm uncomfortable giving it a serious rating, but I'm doing it anyway. The truth is, I enjoyed it more than a few other things in the festival, the plot was predictable but well-paced, and it was successfully realized considering the type of story it set out to create. If it is even possible that this type of collaboration between North Korea and the West can result in anything good, I'm all for it, and in any case, it's a one-of-a-kind phenomenon. I can't think of any reason why a person shouldn't see it.