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Virtual Hallyu: Korean Cinema of the Global Era Paperback – 25 Jan 2012


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Review

"A highly informative and imaginative account of the multifaceted powers of virtuality that make up the unique phenomenon of Korean cinema in the early twenty-first century."--Rey Chow, author of "Sentimental Fabulations, Contemporary Chinese Films"

"The stud[y] by Kyung Hyun Kim discussed in this essay are rich with
information and insights but [is] also challenging, almost subversive, to some prevalent views on Korean cinema and literature." - Hyu Hyun Kim, "Cross Currents"

"Coming close on the heels of "The Remasculinization of Korean Cinema," his seminal analysis of the psychic and political foundations of the New Korean Cinema of the 1990s, Kyung Hyun Kim has now produced the essential text on hallyu, the phase of Korean cinema and related forms of popular culture that became a global sensation in the first decade of the new millennium. Bringing key Deleuzian concepts into focus with sensitive and nuanced readings of international blockbusters, including "The Host" (Bong Joon-ho) and "Oldboy" (Park Chan-wook), as well as the work of notable art-cinema auteurs, Kim establishes himself as not just the most important Anglophone critic of South Korean cinema but a key figure in film and cultural studies generally."--David E. James, author of "The Most Typical Avant-Garde: History and Geography of Minor Cinemas in Los Angeles"

"[T]his is a book that needs to be read by anyone who is interested in the field [of Korean Cinema]."--John Finch ""Asian Studies Review" "

"[U]seful discussions of Korean film (and filmmakers) ranging from Kwon-taek Im's "Sopyonje" (1993) to Chang-dong Lee's "Secret Sunshine" (2007). Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty and professionals."--B. M. McNeal, "Choice"

"[A]n impressive work. The book is timely without being trite or merely fashionable and it contains a number of significant theoretical and local insights into the global present without being uselessly obscure to the general reader. Kim's incisive close readings of widely known South Korean productions ("The Host," "Old Boy," "Secret Sunshine," etc.), as well as the potential to discover new titles, make the book a pleasure to read and to revisit for those inside, outside, or in between Korean studies."--Travis Workman ""Journal of Asian Studies" "

" . . . Kim's book is special in that every effort was exerted to select the most relevant topics and issues for readers in a comprehensive and sophisticated way. I would recommend this book because it is a well-written and detail-oriented account of Korean movies . . . As all chapters are very informative and engage in theoretical arguments that are not just descriptive, this book will be very useful to readers who really love Korean films or are film majors in graduate programs and would like to gain a comprehensive knowledge of Korean cinema." --Sang Yee Cheon ""Korean Studies" "

About the Author

Kyung Hyun Kim is Associate Professor of East Asian Languages and Literatures and Director of the Critical Theory Emphasis at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of The Remasculinization of Korean Cinema, also published by Duke University Press, and a co-producer of the award-winning feature films The Housemaid and Never Forever.


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Amazon.com: HASH(0x91aa4b70) out of 5 stars 1 review
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x91b58c0c) out of 5 stars A Vital Resource for Hallyu Scholars 27 April 2013
By Sherri L. Ter Molen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kyung Hyun Kim's (2011) Virtual Hallyu is an essential academic work for anyone studying South Korean cinema. For Kim, the virtual means both "that which is endowed by the modernist discourse of the virtuous, or full of potential, and that which is suggested by the postmodern term 'virtual reality,' which is hardly real" (p. 28). Relying on this double lens, he examines films such as Im Kwon-taek's Sopyonje and Park Chan-wook's Oldboy, and he offers a chance to think about the ways in which Korean films have presented ideas and symbols that have challenged "national boundaries"(pp. 5-6). He concludes that South Korean cinema hasn't achieved a postcolonial and/or post-Cold War identity, and he suggests that filmmakers should return to Korea's past to tell the stories of marginalized characters such as slaves and eunuchs to unravel Korea's Utopian history and "the corporate capitalist system" (p. 212). Kim's concepts are complex, and they need a lot of unpacking. Therefore, this book is not for the casual Hallyu fan, but it is sure to provoke interesting discussions and to spawn robust scholarship from those who dare to wrestle with Kim's intellectual thinking.
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