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FICTION

The Castle of the Baron de Curval

  • onMarch 7, 2016
  • Vol.31 Spring 2016
  • byChoi Jae-hoon
The Castle of the Baron de Curval
Tr. Josie Sohn
2010
304pp.

Chapter One:

The Castle of the Baron de Curval

 

9 June 1993. K University, Seoul, Korea.

Paek Chŏngin, Lecturer.

Course Title: Women in Cinema.

 

Okay, let’s get going. By the way, where is everyone? We have so many empty seats. It must be the gigs for extras. Well, I’ll let them be for today. You weren’t half bad in the acting lab. Let’s close the window over there. It’s rather loud outside. It’s not too hot, is it? …Why on earth are you putting on a jacket? And you go on about the heat.

Today, we’re going to discuss Edward Fischer’s 1953 film, The Castle of Baron Curval. The title’s got a nice and chilling gothic-horror feel to it, hasn’t it? The film is based on a 1932 novel of the same title by the French author Michel Perrault. The ending is, however, quite different. Fischer himself wrote the script, and it is, I think, his second or third feature film. Fischer was an unknown at the time, but the film itself became the talk of the town for casting Jessica Hayward, a Hollywood megastar of the 1950s. Who has seen the film? Let me have a show of hands. …A staggering three. How about anyone who’s read the novel? …Hmm, no one as expected. This is sad. There was no point in giving you the syllabus at the beginning of the semester. I repeat myself, but please do watch the films before coming to class. We’re supposed to be having a discussion, but I end up talking alone for two hours straight when none of you even have a clue about the plot. You all look as if that’s how it’s supposed to be. In the final exam, I’ll test you on the mise-en-scène. In The Castle of Baron Curval, how does the baron wear his hair? Number one, slicked back. Number two, bobbed… I kid you not.

At any rate, the baron’s castle in the film can be seen as a symbol of interiority where all kinds of human desires are housed. As a matter of fact, practically every narrative text, be it a film or a novel, deals with desire. The point in question is the ways in which desire develops in a work. This film is unlike any other that came before it in this regard, which makes it quite a significant piece in film history. Prior to this one—though nothing much has changed since then—the horror genre portrayed women generally in a couple of different ways. Any guesses? Forget the things like feminist film theories, and just think back on the movies you’ve seen. Like the Dracula series or Basic Instinct that opened last year. …Remember anything other than the leg crossing scene? Women are either the object of desire or the object of fear. The bloody victim is always a hottie, or you have the femme fatale, the dangerous woman. Consider Dracula, for instance. It’s always a beautiful woman with long locks of hair who sleeps with her white neck exposed. Then the vampire comes along, says thank you, and sinks his teeth in. As if the blood tastes better the better looking you are. Even your blood gets discriminated against when you’re not as pretty. Good grief. A woman like me won’t have anything happen to her even if she roomed and boarded in Dracula’s castle, except perhaps for mosquito bites. Ah, I saw you nodding over there. See when you get your grade.

Alternatively, when women are portrayed as evil or monstrous, we can say that it reveals men’s unconscious aversion to and fear of femininity. Julia Kristeva calls this abjection, the womb of horror that is cut off in order to enter the symbolic order. You don’t need to take notes on this. It’s probably all Greek to you, don’t bother. Sexuality, in any case, is equally important for the femmes fatale. Do you think you’d have the same story in Basic Instinct if Sharon Stone wasn’t sexy? She’s got to catch her prey before she can kill it or let it go. At the end of the day, the horror film objectifies woman as the Other, whether she is an object of desire or of fear. Laura Mulvey argues that the logic of the patriarchal unconscious in the male gaze is encoded into the language of classical Hollywood cinema itself as such. …Goodness, you gentlemen make a face the minute you hear the word patriarchy. Relax, it’s not about you.

Anyway, although The Castle of Baron Curval did not really attract much attention in its day, it is still worth thinking about the character of Camilla Harper, the female protagonist, in the context of the 1950s cinema. That is, she appears as an active subject in the narrative without conforming to the conventional image of the screaming damsels in distress in horror pictures. She’s like a foremother of Sigourney Weaver, the woman warrior in Alien, or Linda Hamilton in The Terminator. …You’re all spacing out. What a sight. What’s all this yakety-yak about? You don’t know because you haven’t watched the film. Oh well, let’s do a quick review of the plot. The Harpers who run a ranch in Texas have a hard time making ends meet and are about to go bankrupt. Then Camilla remembers her sister who married Baron Curval and moved to France ten yeas ago and sends her a letter to ask for help. Her brother-in-law is rolling in the dough, why not borrow some? Camilla’s sister writes her back saying that she’d be more than happy to help and invites the Harpers to France. With a sigh of relief, Camilla and her husband take their daughter, Catherine, across the Atlantic Ocean to receive the money and, while they’re at it, take a vacation. After a long voyage, the Harpers finally arrive at the castle of Baron Curval in Creully, France.

 

9 June 1932. New York, New York.

The Writer Michel Perrault and His Editor

 

“Granny used to gather us children and tell us stories every evening. The rhythm of her creaky rocking chair, the flames swaying to and fro in the fireplace, and the slow and gentle cadence of her voice… We were always spellbound by her wonderland stories. The cat talked, the one-eyed giant lost his bag of gold, Bluebeard killed his wives, the fairy helped the knight marry the princess… Everything is still so vivid. The world created by Granny’s voice was more real and exciting than the one that I lived in. Actually, I borrowed a motif from one of her stories called ‘Courageous Jean and Baron Curval’ to write this novel.”

“Your grandmother left you a treasure for an inheritance.”

The editor nudged his plate of steak aside and ordered coffee.

“Without a doubt. The stories also came in handy for Mother. She had only to say, ‘Michel, be a good boy or we’ll leave you alone in the castle of Baron Curval.’ And, lo and behold, I’ll be as meek as a lamb. Granny’s tales were much more than simple amusement for me. I believed in them, as if all of the creatures and characters were living their lives somewhere, as if I could go see them someday. Take Baron Curval, for instance. He simply leapt out of the story and has long been hovering about in my mind’s world. I wonder why. It’s only a short fairytale after all. I still see him every now and then in my dreams. His face is, however, always different. Anyone I dislike or fear never fails to appear as Baron Curval in a dream. I’ve, in fact, had the pleasure of seeing you as the baron a few times—you always asked for my manuscripts.”

Perrault broke into a smile as he dabbed at his mouth with a napkin.

“I wrote this novel to give a shape to the baron, the ghost that roams about the cave of my unconscious. And, you know what, as I continued writing, the baron’s face gradually became that of mine. I was hardly surprised. He’d been feeding off all the dregs of emotions that I refuse to face myself. He must be more like me than I am—yes, more than myself… You know what I think? I wonder if Baron Curval had been around since long ago, somewhere far away, like in Granny’s stories and if I’m only a mirror that reflects a small part of the man… Look, are you listening?”

“What? Oh, yes, I am.”

“What are you looking at so intently?”

“Over there, in the churchyard. See that man grabbing someone by the collar at the soup kitchen line? His name is Wilson, used to be an up-and-coming stockbroker. I’ve met the guy a few times at Buchanan’s parties. A bit cocky, but he was a lot of fun and everyone liked him all right. He used to be a smart dresser, too—had all his suits cut in London. Good heavens! He’s all rags and tatters now.”

“There is not a shortage of others like him. It must be a temporary thing.”

“Well, I hope so. The depression has been dragging on and on. Publishers are closing down all over the place.”

“Oh, stop it already. We’ve had a depression before. It’s only expected in a capitalist economy. Things will pick up soon. By the way, have you read the manuscript?”

“Of course, I’ve finished it already. It looks good. Adding elements of fantasy breathed a new life into your writing. It is good, but how about if you cut the beginning a little? The part where Camilla visits her sister and spends time at the baron’s castle reads a bit slowly. It lacks suspense compared to how the plot develops from there, and it makes the entire narrative rather unbalanced.”

Perrault sipped his coffee and stroked his beard thoughtfully. His burly eyebrows wiggled awkwardly like a couple of caterpillars fallen on a marble floor.

“Yes, quite so, quite so… But it is very important to describe Camilla’s psychology right early on. Readers will find the latter half of the story persuasive only if they can identify with her to begin with. Right from day one, Camilla feels distant from her sister even before she has a chance to enjoy the reunion. Her sister, for one thing, has not changed a bit from ten years ago. She also sees herself in the mirror looking much more aged than her sister what with the rough ranch work and all that. She begins to harbor fear beyond remorse before the existence called time. The noble and dignified bearing of Baron Curval, the rare dishes that she had never laid her eyes on before, and the servants who do everything for them so they can eat, drink and be merry… The story must show the stark contrast between the riches of the castle at her disposal and her inner world that only grows darker as time goes on. It is not simply what you would call jealousy or envy. It is rather that there is no sense of reality, as if her sister no longer belonged to this world in her mind.

Yet, one day, the situation turns upside down. Her sister promises a sum of money large enough to buy two or three ranches and proposes that she adopts Catherine. Guess what, it’s not so easy for her to turn this down. And, mind you, Catherine is the dearest thing in the world to her! She basically draws an ace in a game she almost gave up on. She can’t help but feel pleased, however secretly, at the sight of her childless sister who seemed to have it all. She no longer feels so distant from her sister and is now free to envy and feel jealous, and even admire her sister to her heart’s content. Don’t we all begin like this whether we mean well or ill? ‘I want to be like that, I can be like that.’”

 

9 June 2004. Tokyo, Japan.

Interview with Filmmaker Nakazawa Satoshi, Kinema Junpō

 

Q: The Castle of Baron Tōsen, your last film before your move to Hollywood, is a remake of Edward Fischer’s The Castle of Baron Curval. This came as a bit of a surprise for many. Have the prospects of moving to Hollywood had any hand in making this decision?

S: Yes and no. If I had been preoccupied with moving to Hollywood, I would not have taken the pains to pick the least popular piece from Fischer’s extensive filmography. (Chuckles) The Castle of Baron Curval holds a special place in my heart. I began dreaming of becoming a filmmaker after watching it at fifteen. Working on the remake, like changing the setting to Japan and reinterpreting the original, reminded me of my humble beginnings. It is also a gift from me to my fans in Japan, a token of my appreciation for their faithful support. Please consider it a stamp of resolution that I will not lose my own filmmaking philosophy and touch as I continue making movies in Hollywood.

Q:Why were you so drawn to The Castle of Baron Curval?

S:I think I was rather fascinated by its ambiguity and lack of narrative balance, the very things that it is criticized for. And I find new things every time I watch it. It does a great job of detailing each character without conforming to genre conventions. I was also impressed by how it handles the psychology of fear that seeps in from such a bright and glamorous setting. It contrasts starkly with most of the popular Dracula movies of the time that channeled fear by creating dark and sinister atmosphere throughout. The film also captures the subtle nuances of anxiety and obsession borne out of the encounter with an unfamiliar side of that which always has been familiar, making one unable to tell reality from fantasy shaped by one’s own desires. When, for instance, Camilla is troubled after her sister offers to adopt Catherine, she senses a glimpse of evil in her daughter’s eyes and strikes her for no good reason. She also imagines the baron violating her whenever she helps herself to the mysterious blue drink and falls into a stupor at the baron’s parties.

Q:You always have ventured to go against and play with classical film language ever since you directed your first film. What kind of changes did you make in The Castle of Baron Tōsen?

S: I kept my “destruction for the sake of creation” to a minimum partly because I meant to pay homage to Fischer. That said, however, I worked hard to incorporate my own perspectives. The biggest difference would be the ending though I shan’t tell you the particulars. If I did, I’d lose the audience. (Laughs) In The Castle of Baron Tōsen, I brought back the original’s original, namely, the ending in the novel by Michel Perrault that Fischer had changed. Fischer is considered the father of cult movies, but, in his films, characters rise above rather than give in to their desires even in the worst of situations. I think this is why he changed the ending from the novel.

After watching the film, I went to great lengths to find the book, which has a grotesque appeal that the film more or less lacks. The novel was published in 1932 when the United States was caught in the maelstrom of the Great Depression. To Michel Perrault, capitalism that had expanded wildly before it finally exploded must have seemed like a dark tunnel without an exit. Perrault presents capitalism, which must reproduce desire in order to sustain itself, in the form of the castle of Baron Curval. Fear has different faces, but, at its core, it varies little. Is there anything more terrifying than the moment when you realize that the shadowy figure that slowly reaches for your neck is nothing but your own? The mute girl with a sad face who roams about the outskirts of the castle where extravagant banquets take place day after day signifies the ragged spirit of the modern man who has lost language. In this regard, the novel’s ending comes across to me as more modern than that of the film.

Q:What are your plans in Hollywood?

S:I’m currently working on a scenario with Universal Pictures. My first film will be a Japan-US co-production. It’s about a Japanese exorcist who is rushed to New York when a Japanese-speaking ghost turns up at a state-of-the-art, high-rise building in the city. I plan to stage a bout of wildness, mixing up time and space in the film. It’s definitely going to be a lot of fun. Once casting is completed in Japan, I’ll fly over to America and get on with pre-production. This opportunity to work in Hollywood has been made possible all thanks to my loyal fans. Please look forward to my films with your continued love and support.

 

9 June 2006. A Naver Blog.

Cult Girl (cult666)

 

The Castle of Baron Tōsen

Japanese Cult Film Festival, CineCube, Gwanghwamun

 

The Castle of Baron Tōsen is Nakazawa Satoshi’s Japanese-style remake of the 1953 film The Castle of Baron Curval. This is the one that was put in the spotlight out of the blue last year after the case of the psycho couple in Atlanta. Was it in 2002? I remembered watching The Castle of Baron Curval at an Edward Fischer retrospective and got a ticket right away. There were only eight people in the theater including me. (Two of them left, grumbling, in the middle of the film.)

The original film is set against the backdrop of Neuschwanstein Castle, the one that is famous as the model of Disney’s Cinderella Castle. It looks like the film beat Disney to it since Disneyland opened in 1955. The castle was filmed, however, only from outside while the majority of the movie was shot at a studio in Hollywood (no wonder the interior looks really crappy).

The atmosphere of Neu Castle (I keep making typos) in the film is quite something that takes you right into the movie at first sight. It shows off its beauty, rather romantic like in a book of fairytales, especially when it glows under the daylight at the beginning of the film. The castle slowly turns dark and eerie, however, as the plot thickens.

One day, Camilla who is torn between money and her child happens to see one of the village women coming up to the castle, wailing loudly, to ask for her daughter back. Camilla slides quietly out of the castle and follows the woman and learns that the woman had recently sold her daughter to the baron as a maidservant. It is dusk by the time she returns to the castle after wandering around for hours trying to find her way out of the unfamiliar village. The overbearing silhouette she sees above the bluff is, however, not of the same romantic castle that she had seen earlier in the day. The once-splendid spires now look as menacing as the horns of the devil, and the blazing torches at the watchtower glare at her as if to devour her. It is from this moment on that the castle reveals its grotesque face against the darkness of the night. A castle for Cinderella by day and for Frankenstein by night. I wonder if the director chose this castle in the remote highlands of Germany for its Janus-like face despite the fact that the film is set in France.

Ludwig II of Bavaria, the “Mad King Ludwig,” who built Neu Castle is well known for his keen artistic sensibilities as well as for his love of the arts and architecture. In fact, he loved the arts so much that he could not care any less about running the kingdom and was locked away for madness as he kept building ritzy castles here and there for a hobby. In the end, he was found dead in a lake, the cause of his death unknown, before he ever got to see the completion of Neu Castle that he was so fond of. After having spared no expense at the cost of bankrupting the Bavarian public funds over the span of seventeen years, he only got to spend a mere hundred days at the castle. It’s small wonder that the castle turned ghastly as if his ghost is lurking about. He is said to have asked the castle to be torn down after he died. He didn’t want his dear castle to be turned into a public spectacle. No one, of course, took this outrageous will seriously. Today, Neu Castle is responsible for most of the tourist income in the state of Bavaria. When all’s said and done, this extravagant hobby of the “mad king” is putting food on the tables of his descendents to this day.

The Castle of Baron Tōsen is set against the backdrop of Okayama Castle in Japan. The way its roofs surround all four sides of the castle in layers of “^” lends it a delicate sort of beauty unlike the majestic castles in Europe. This film also has the same scene in which Kamiko (Camilla in the original) returns to the castle at night—same but different since this dainty castle cannot recreate the terror of Neu Castle. The elegant lines of Okayama Castle instead make one picture a mysterious woman beckoning with a smile. A simple glance in the direction of the castle alone will make you feel the urge to rush in and solve the mystery!

Okayama Castle is also called Crow Castle because of its black exterior. Himeji Castle, or Egret Castle, located in a neighboring prefecture is another one that is considered one of the most beautiful in Japan but is painted white, hence the name. Supposedly, the lord of Okayama Castle painted it black because he was so self-conscious about how his castle compared to the one next door. (Gimme a break.) It is worth noting that Neuschwanstein Castle means a “new white swan castle,” which makes this film a transformation of a White Swan Castle into a Crow Castle. (Did Nakazawa Satoshi suffer the same inferiority complex?)

 Both Neuschwanstein Castle and Okayama Castle play a hand in creating a unique atmosphere in each film. Personally, I would like to give more points to Neuschwanstein Castle in the original film for producing an extraordinary contrast in the setting between day and night. Cult movie fans will enjoy seeing how these films produced fifty years apart compare with the images of the castles from the East and the West.

 

9 June 1952. Miami, Florida.

Jessica Hayward, an Actress, and Thomas Browning, a Film Producer

 

…Yes, Tommy, I’m fine. You know what the audience wants. Of course, it would’ve been nice to have more viewers and better reviews, but I don’t really mind. What is important to me above all else is my performance in each film I act for. …Yes, I want to remain in the minds of the audience as a true actress for a long time to come. You know very well that I can’t stand you-know-who, the upstart who is always on the look out for a rich man to marry. …Yes, great. We have beautiful weather here. Well, it’s a bit warm even for Miami.…The hotel is fine and I’m happy with my room. I just wish there weren’t so many reporters everywhere I go. …I’m not sure. It’s scheduled for the 11th. What date is it today? …Oh, is it already? I think I’ll stay for a few more days. …Right, I don’t know when I’ll have another chance to get away like this. …I received the script. …Sure, I’ve finished reading. The Baron of Castle Curval—it’s a page turner. …Hmm, it’s not bad at all. It’s got a strong, really absorbing narrative. …Naturally. I, too, need to choose my next film carefully. You know how people love to gossip about an actress who fails at the box-office twice in a row. …True, I do need fresh inspiration at this point though I feel rather uneasy about the young director. By the way, Tommy, what do you think about changing the script a bit? …No, the story itself is fine. It’s got a strong plot. But don’t you think the role of Camilla is too weak? …No, I don’t think so. I rather think that it’d be much more natural for this film to have Camilla come to the fore and lead the story. For the film to work, we must play up the love of the mother who will do anything to protect her daughter. …Tommy, listen to me first. Who did you say is the rookie who got the role of Bill, the husband? …That’s right, Herbert. …I know him all right! Robert or Herbert, the Texas hillbilly! Wait a sec, let me light my cigarette. Hooooo… Look here, Tomas. I have no intention of appearing as a half-witted woman screaming and shrieking next to that understudy. Absolutely not. I, too, am taking a big risk in working with a novice director and a novice actor. I need some motivation here. Besides, I’m speaking for the film as well. …Tommy, what’s so difficult? I think we just have to change a few things from where Camilla returns from the village. Wait, where’s my script? …That’s right. It is as simple as swapping the roles of the husband and the wife starting right here. Instead of bawling and telling her husband what she’d heard in the village, she can tackle the mystery of the baron herself. She will snitch the key to the secret chamber in the basement and find the baron’s portrait and his letters, and then she can follow a servant to a shed and dig up the ground there. …I can practice shoveling. …For goodness’ sake, it’s not going to take any time at all. We just have to change “Bill” to “Camilla” in the script. …The duel scene? Why not? You don’t have to fist fight to have a duel. A woman can do it as thrillingly as a man. Haven’t I told you? I struck down a tosspot with a bottle of Wild Turkey when he tried to hit on me at a party. Ha, ha! Tommy, try to change your thinking. Just try. The audience wants new things. …If I don’t get to play a larger role, I’m afraid I’d have to find another film.

 

9 June 1952. Los Angeles, California.

Actor Robert Hudson and His Girlfriend Elizabeth

 

“Camilla, pack your bags. We’ve got to get out of here. Catherine! Where is Catherine?”

“Bill, what’s the matter? What happened?”

“Oh, good God! This place is a devil’s den!”

“Calm down, honey. What on earth do you mean? Why, Bill! You’re bleeding!”

“I’m fine. This is Jacque’s blood. You know, one of the servants. We were fighting in the barn just now, and I killed him.”

“What do you mean, honey? You killed Jacque?”

“I had no choice. Jacque would’ve done me in if I hadn’t. Can you guess what I just found in the barn? Human bones! Children’s bones, and not just a few! They are all buried in the ground in the barn.”

“Children’s… bones?”

“The things that have been going on in this castle are simply unspeakable. Take a look at this. I found this in the secret chamber in the basement where the baron disappears from time to time.”

“It’s the baron’s portrait.”

“See the year it was painted. It’s 1697. That makes him more than two hundred years old now.”

“This can’t be… It must be an ancestor who looks like him.”

“His name is written on the back there. Donatien Alphonse Francois de Curval. It’s the baron’s name all right. There’s more. I found a terrifying secret of his in the chamber.”

“Bill, slow down. You’re not making any sense.”

“This is not the time for all this. I’ll tell you all about it as we get out of here. We must find Catherine first. Catherine! Catherine!”

“Wait, wait. Robbie, I think you got too excited with your lines there. Shouldn’t you control your emotions a bit more and look steady and dependable?”

“Should I?”

“Sure, I think the male lead should keep calm. How can he protect his family when he’s so worked up?”

Robert flung himself on the bed.

“Ah, how can I not get excited? I got the lead role. You know how long I’ve been waiting for this. I still can’t believe it.”

Elizabeth snuggled into his arm and stroked his whiskers with her fingers.

“You’re not by any chance excited because you’d be working with Jessica Hayward, are you?”

“Well, perhaps I am.”

Elizabeth pinched his nipple gently. Robert, all smiles, leaned over and planted a kiss on her forehead.

“Just wait, Mrs. Hudson. You’ll soon find yourself in a mansion in Beverly Hills with at least three maids in the house.”

The phone rang when Robert began unbuttoning her blouse with his face buried between the mounds of her breasts. He turned around immediately and picked up the telephone.

“Ah, Mr. Browning. I’ve been waiting for your call. …Certainly, I already began rehearsing my lines. I’m practically Bill Harper now, ha-ha!”

Robert winked at Elizabeth. She undid his belt as she kissed his navel.

“When do we start filming? …Hmm, is that so? So the script is going to be revised a trifle, right?”

 

9 June 2005. Korea.

MBC News Desk

Shocking news from Atlanta, garamond-premier-pro. A couple in their fifties have been arrested for the kidnap and murder of their seven-year-old niece. The remains of the victim are also said to have been consumed by the couple who have confessed to having modeled their crime after a film they had watched at a local theater. MBC’s Kim Sŏkki reporting from Atlanta.

----------The seven-year-old girl who was reported missing in Atlanta, garamond-premier-pro, was found dead. The police charged the McCarthys, the uncle and the aunt of the victim, who reside in a neighboring town. The investigators discovered a part of the remains of the victim’s severed body in a heavy-duty refrigerator which was kept in their basement. The McCarthys confessed to having killed their niece in the basement after kidnapping her after school and taking her back to their home in their car on the day of her disappearance. Americans across the country are expressing shock and grief as they learn that the McCarthys have frozen and used the victim’s body for daily cooking.

 

Jonathan McClain (Atlanta Police)

This is the most horrendous crime I have ever come across in my twenty-eight years of service on the police force. We found the victim’s body in a leftover stew, and the cooking utensils in the kitchen also tested positive for the victim’s blood. Much of the victim’s body seems to have been consumed already.

 

John Cooper (District Prosecutor, Fulton County)

I will charge the defendants with first-degree murder and see to it that they pay for this crime. Their attorney claims mental illness, but it is obvious that the defendants had a clear purpose and calculated their moves very carefully. This could very well have turned into a case of serial murders had the arrest not been made.

----------The investigators have reported that the McCarthys committed the crime in order to consume human flesh after watching a recently released film. This film, a Japanese remake of a Hollywood classic, is about an aristocratic couple who purchase the children of tenant farmers as servants for their grand castle to be killed and dined on all in the pursuit of eternal youth. This atrocious crime similarly appears to have been motivated by a distorted desire for youth and beauty. The McCarthys have spared nothing in their efforts to stay young including using growth hormones and expensive cosmetics, visiting the doctor’s office, and even drinking their own urine. A number of child protective service agencies have requested an injunction to ban the film, resparking the age-old debate across America surrounding the issues of media influence on crime and the freedom of expression.

 

Rachel Flint (Atlanta Resident)

Movies, cartoons, and games that encourage extreme violence and sexual perversion are sickening our society. I fear for my children. Is it impossible to make movies without resorting to such extreme representations that promote crime? Think about the victim’s parents. Would anyone dare to talk to them about the freedom of expression?

 

Jake Powell (Atlanta Resident)

The whole controversy is most anachronistic, backward. Can you fire a gun just by pulling the trigger when it’s not loaded? It’s absurd to blame movies for depicting violence before even considering the violent tendencies in us. This reminds me of a line from a movie.

If one walks on water but drowns and dies, is the Bible to blame?

----------The film is gaining much attention amidst the controversy and is currently shown in more than three hundred theaters nationwide, a dramatic increase from the initial twenty five. Kim Sŏkki, MBC News, Atlanta, garamond-premier-pro. 

Author's Profile

Choi Jae-hoon (b.1973) made his literary debut when he won the new writer’s award from Literature and Society in 2007. His works include Baron Quirval’s Castle, Seven Cat Eyes, and From the Sleep of Babes.