Chun Tae-il (or Jeon, in some spellings of his loved ones name) was a South Korean sewing worker and workers’ rights activist who committed suicide by self-immolation at the age of 22 in protest at the poor operating circumstances of South Korean factories. His death brought interest to the substandard labor circumstances and helped the formation of the labor union movement in South Korea. Previously inspiring the great (if somewhat controversial) “A Single Spark”, his story now finds a different outlet from the nearby film market, this time in animation.
“Chun Tae-il: A Flame that Lives On” is screening on Fantasia International Film Festival
The film starts with Tae-il becoming a young man who has acquired tailoring abilities from his bitter, alcoholic father, with the two of them and his mother attempting to help their loved ones, which also contains two far more siblings, each younger than Tae-il. Sooner or later they move to Seoul in search for a improved future, with Tae-il at some point locating a job in Peace Marketplace, a notorious cluster of sweatshops. Whilst there, the vibrant young man manages to get a promotion from assistant to head tailor, the highest position amongst the workers. As time passes, nevertheless, he realizes that each him and his co-workers are operating beneath insane circumstances, with no days off, sometimes offered caffeine tablets to perform overnight, in compact rooms with no ventilation, actually killing themselves operating. When a colleague suffers from TB, Tae-il is instigated to get started reading about the labor laws of the nation, realizing that none of them is becoming implemented. Along with some equivalent-minded people today, he decides to fight for the worker’s rights, but is met with resistance from each side.
All the things that occurs in this story is wrapped about a cover of unfairness and despair, which appear to be the two principal components of the film. Chun Tae-il did not ask to be born in such a poor loved ones, nor to have to perform beneath not possible circumstances, anything that basically applies to his colleagues also. Moreover, it becomes evident that most of them do not have the time to understand what is taking place to them, because all their time is spent creating a living. As such, when Tae-il learns about labor laws, by means of his sheer tenacity and inherent kindness, a glimmer of hope all of a sudden arises, only to be crushed straight away beneath the realization that the game is rigged, as employers, the authorities and politicians are operating with each other.
These components make his final act each heroic, but also justified taking into consideration the despair this disillusionment brings to him, and the truth that, at the time, seemed like the only way for anything to modify, which it basically did. Basically, one particular could say that the entire film is set to lead to this moment, which is excellently portrayed in audiovisual terms, and the most memorable one particular in the film, with Hong capturing all its context in the most shockingly dramatic style.
Relating to the animation, the method right here aims at realism, with the scenes relating to tailoring becoming the apogee of this element. The pastel, sometimes reddish colors dominate, in a selection that performs nicely against the rather dramatic narrative. The movement flows nicely and in common the animation is serviceable, with no any extravagances, providing space to the context rather of attempting to impress. On the other hand, the drawing of the characters could have integrated far more imagination, because a quantity of them appear also a great deal alike, to the point that it is tough to distinguish among them. The background detail, even though, is rather higher, with the different buildings that seem all through becoming the higher point of this trait.
“Chun Tae-il: A Flame that Lives On” presents a really rewarding presentation of a actually critical subject, though continuing the really intriguing, context-initial path Korean animation appear to be taking through the final handful of years.