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Woman on the Beach

8 customer reviews

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$29.95 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Filmmaker Joong-rae, suffering from writer's block, takes a trip to the coast with his production designer Chang-wook, who brings along the vivacious Moon-sook. Soon after their arrival, Moon-sook falls for Joong-rae's advances; however, the fickle hero can't commit and he awkwardly parts with her. What had been a sardonic Jules and Jim turns into a burlesque Vertigo when Joong-rae returns to the coastal resort and attempts to recreate the original romance with a woman who resembles Moon-sook, until his jilted lover shows up... Deemed by many critics to be Hong Sang-soo's most sheerly enjoyable and satisfying film, Woman on the Beach satirizes the misalignment of art and life, as the mysteries of the heart and the mysteries of artistic creation collide in ways that are both ironic and affecting.

Special Features:
- Making of Woman on the Beach
- Interviews with cinematographer Kim Hyung-koo and composer Jeong Yong-jin
- Theatrical Trailer
- Scene Selections
- Dolby Digital 5.1
- Enhanced for 16x9 TVs
- Optional English Subtitles

"Incredibly captivating... a gifted filmmaker, a smart and funny script, and capable actors fuse into one perfect cinematic experience that leaves the viewer in a state of bliss. Charming and delightful." Rudy Joggerst, REEL.COM

"Beatiful, drily funny.... Hong's best. Grade: A." Lisa Schwarzbaum, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY

"A dazzlingly astute reading of male-female relationships." Scott Foundas, LA WEEKLY

"Exhilarating! Profoundly rewarding." Aaron Hillis, PREMIERE

"A deadpan, melancholy erotic comedy...like mid-period Woody Allen." J. Hoberman, THE VILLAGE VOICE


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors:  Hyun-jung Go, Seon-mi Song Seung-woo Kim
  • Directors: Hong Sang-soo
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Letterboxed, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: Korean
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: New Yorker
  • DVD Release Date: December 30, 2008
  • Run Time: 128 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001DDBDCW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #151,535 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Helena on January 17, 2009
To watch this movie, one really has to be patient. It moves slowly and if not for the occasional moments of humor it would have been a real drag. This film has an idea of what it is to catch a right moment when two people can connect and be intimate. Surely one would think that these are adults that can handle any situation but these thirty somethings are worse than teenagers. The outward impression of them is never matching with what is going on inside of them. Deep inside they are either too damaged, or too childlish to handle their own emotions and decisions. One almost feels like wanting to smack them so they can snap out of it. In any case the appearances are never what the reality is. And that is what movie is all about. Couple is not really a couple. Well meaning stranger is not always a well meaning stranger seeking to strike a new friendship. And seemingly dog loving couple is anything but...
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By avoraciousreader on April 18, 2009
Woman on the Beach
dir. Hong Sang-soo, 2006

Washed up at low tide 4*

I'm giving this one the same 4* review as a couple of other reviewers, but view it less favorably. From the tone of their reviews, I'm surprised they didn't award enthusiastic 5*s.

"Woman on the Beach" continues the male-female relationship theme of 2004's "Woman is the Future of Man," but is, for me, more successful. The males, if anything, are even more pathetic and wimpy jerks, but the women, though still pushovers, show signs of inner strength and are more in charge of their lives.

Once again two buddies vie for the attention of one woman. Film director Kim Jongrae (oddly, film maker Hong's films seem to involve filmmakers, like rock songs about musicians' lives on the road ;-) is stuck writing a script, and insists his buddy Changwook (who, the dvd cover informs us, is his production designer) accmpany him on a getaway to try to get the creative juices flowing. Changwook agrees, but only if he brings his girlfriend. So, in spite of a threatened "sandstorm" [??], the two buddies, somewhere approaching middle age, take off for the seaside resort town of Shinduri, with the pretty, younger Moonsook, and tension builds as the two vie for her attention ... or is it she playing one against the other?

Shinduri, oddly, is nearly deserted, perhaps because of the hotel rooms which are unexpectedly expensive? or the sandstorm, which never shows? or the surly restaurant waiters, which leads Jongrae to an explosive outburst? Anyway, the threesome totter about looking for a cheap room, getting drunk and pontificating a lot, and doing no writing.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Roland E. Zwick on January 11, 2009
Needing a quiet, relaxing environment in which to complete the script for his latest film, well-known director Kim Jung-rae heads to a largely deserted seaside resort with his friend, Won Chang-wook, and Won's beautiful girlfriend, Kim Mun-suk. Tensions quickly develop when Kim and Mun-suk become romantically involved with one another, leaving the erstwhile Won as essentially odd-man-out. Yet, terrified of making any kind of long term commitment, Kim backs away from Mun-suk at a crucial moment, causing a serious rupture in their relationship. It`s only after a second woman comes into the picture that Mun-suk returns to the beach town, further complicating Kim's already complicated life - though providing possible fodder for the script he`s having such a hard time completing.

Slow-moving, episodic and hypnotic, the Korean drama "Woman on the Beach" is wonderfully perceptive about human nature and the multi-faceted and complex ways in which people relate to one another. It's virtually impossible to pigeonhole any of the characters since they often act and react in ways that surprise and intrigue us. Director Sang-soo Hong relies largely on extended conversations to tell his story, an approach which allows the drama to unfold in a thoroughly naturalistic fashion, without having to resort to melodrama or contrivance to get its points across. To that end, the movie is filled with numerous seemingly irrelevant, off-the-cuff moments (including the final scene) that add immeasurably to the verisimilitude of the piece. As a result, every moment in the film feels unscripted and real, an illusion greatly enhanced by the excellent performances of Seung-woo Kim, Hyun-jung Go, Seon-mi Song and Tae-woo Kim.

Finally, the shuttered hotels and sparsely populated beaches and boardwalks provide an eerily appropriate backdrop for this tale of an individual so haunted by the demons and ghosts of his own past that he finds it difficult to live in the present.
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Writer and director Hong Sang-soo has created an insightful comedy of romantic relationships in "Woman on the Beach", an equal opportunity mockery of the neuroses, pretensions, and desires of men, women, and even filmmakers. Kim Jung-rae (Kim Seung-woo) is a South Korean film director from Seoul. He's having trouble finishing his latest script, so he imposes upon friend and fellow writer Won Chang-wook (Kim Tae-woo) to accompany him to the seaside resort town of Shinduri, where he hopes to be inspired. Feeling put-upon, Chang-wook insists on bringing his girlfriend Kim Moon-sook (Go Hyun-jung) along. Director Kim is immediately taken with her and takes every opportunity to come between the couple. Moon-sook seems to prefer the director to her more down-to-earth companion, as well.

"Woman on the Beach" always plays it straight: Moon-sook's sassiness, director Kim's bumbling attempts at flattery, his pretentious film, his self-conscious intolerance, Chang-wook's posturing. The first half of the film pits one savvy and manipulative woman against two male egos who fight over her, probably because they have nothing better to do. It's hilarious. This trio speaks bluntly, and they always do and say the unexpected. The second half of the film didn't work as well for me, because the tone is difficult to express in subtitles. Once there is nothing to keep Director Kim and Moon-sook apart, their neuroses take over, of course. Without being able to understand how the actors are expressing themselves, it looks like either straight drama or parody. It is undoubtedly intended to be parody, and the situations are still funny, but the dialogue isn't effective in subtitles. I enjoyed the smart, straight-faced satire, though, and I'm sure "Woman on the Beach" is even better if you understand Korean.
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