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Camp 14: Total Control Zone [DVD]

4.1 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Camp 14: Total Control Zone [DVD]
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  • Escape from Camp 14: One man's remarkable odyssey from North Korea to freedom in the West
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  • Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea
Total price: £26.30
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Product details

  • Directors: Marc Wiese
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: Korean, English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 28 Oct. 2013
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00EO2YOB6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 49,718 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

From director Mark Wiese comes the award winning, powerful story of Shin Dong-hyuk who was born as a political prisoner in a death camp in North-Korea. From the age of six, he was subjected to forced labour, hunger, beatings and torture. He was always at the mercy of the wardens, and knew nothing of the world outside the barbed-wire fences. He thought everybody lived that way. With the help of an older prisoner, he succeeded in escaping at the age of 23 and encountered a world completely strange to him. Camp 14: Total Control Zone offers a unique insight into this incredible story; from one of the few people who can talk first-hand about the ordeal of being raised in a North Korean prison camp. With CGI animation to bring his memories to life and the testimony of two former high-ranking North-Korean officers involved in the prison-camp system, Camp 14: Total Control Zone portrays shocking stories and perspectives in a film that is difficult to believe is real.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Having had the pleasure of meeting Shin personally last year, I bought this dvd as soon as I seen it was due for release. I have read his book and have travelled to North Korea and therefore have a great interest in the place and the people.

The documentary itself is very slow moving, with long pauses, abstract shots and segments without any accompanying audio at all. Obviously featuring Shin's story mainly, there are splashes of animation and some graphic footage smuggled out from NK appearing every so often.

In addition to Shin, two ex-prison camp guards, now based in Seoul, appear throughout giving their experiences and stories, which made me wonder, with them being so open and honest about what they had done, how come they aren't tried and convicted for such heinous crimes? As I watched them tell their stories, I never seen the look of much regret in their faces, although one did state that he is plagued by guilt.

Shin is obviously very uncomfortable retelling his story, it is still very raw with him, it still hurts and still causes nightmares. I understand that he politely refuses many requests to tell his story. During this documentary, the cameras do follow him to a few meetings where he is testifying, in one occasion at a human rights convention and another at what looks to be a church gathering.

I would suggest reading Shin's book before watching this as the book covers more ground. This is an hour and a half of dark and harrowing detail from the most oppressive country on earth. It is a story which will shock many and raise awareness for what is happening to hundreds of thousands of ordinary Korean people today.
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This is a gruellng story told mostly by the voice of the victim, sometimes prompted by questions. His face tells of the mark the camps left on him. Evocative eerie cartoons dictionary life in the camp. It is true that the North Korean government have attempted to discredit details of story. But they have unwittingly opened more terrible truths, namely, that as a boy the victim was made to denounce his mother and brother as murderers, which they were not. Interviews with two senior camp guards unveils the arbitrary and sadistic use of torture. The guards could torture, hang or shoot prisoners with impunity. The film confirms the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of North Korea and the certitude of its eventual entire collapse. There will be nowhere for the ridiculous leaderz to hide and their people will turn on them with zeal. Is it too late for reform. Yes unless it is total and immediate. The threat they face is not from outside forces but from the citizens of North Korea who have endured moral distortions, poverty, and cultural and intellectual poverty for decades. What wasted years. And no wonder camps staffed by torturers and psychopath bullies are needed to terrify the population into submission. But if the leaders don't stop they will be swept away by a vengeful population. The clock is ticking.
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Have always been interested bytotalitarian regimes...the live interviews are really chilling, these are not human beings !, the cartoons are very well done, how can a place like this still be on our planet, the mind boggles..A film to be seen by everyone,
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I had read the book and was tremendously moved and horrified. This DVD just brought it closer and convinced me that North Korea must be the most evil place in the world today.
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A bad documentary, which this certainly is, tells you far more about the filmmaker than its subject. Perhaps it's not clear unless you read the book on which it's based, but the filmmaker has left out a huge amount of important information, that would have contributed so much to our understanding of North Korea, and what do we get instead? Endless lingering shots of the subject's face.

No doubt this seems clever to the people he was at film school with (and not that long ago, I suspect) but it's a criminal waste of an opportunity to tell a vitally important story.
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Format: DVD
Could have been an extremely informative account, however the director seems more concerned with his art spending long periods of camera work on commuters and long pauses from Shin. The whole documentary could have been done in 30 minutes as the long pauses seem to just extend it- I had to stop watching half way through as it was just becoming unwatchable! My advise .... Read the book!!
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