Han Gong-ju (2013 Korean) - 한공주

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Han Gong-ju (2013 Korean) - 한공주 poster

Date Created: 31/12/2017
Date Modified: 31/12/2017
Genre: |
Runtime: 112 min -
After transferring to a new school Gong-joo becomes friends with Eun-hee, who convinces her to join an acappella club. When news gets out of Gong-joo’s new hobby, a group of former classmates parents cause a stir, unveiling Gong-joo’s troubled past.
Han Gong-ju (Hangul: 한공주) is a 2013 South Korean film written and directed by Lee Su-jin, starring Chun Woo-hee in the title role.[1][2][3][4][5][6] It was inspired by the infamous Miryang gang rape case of 2004.[7]

The film premiered at the 2013 Busan International Film Festival where it won the CGV Movie Collage Award and the Citizen Reviewers' Award.[8]

As it traveled the international film festival circuit, Han Gong-ju won several top prizes, including the Golden Star at the 2013 Marrakech International Film Festival,[9][10] the Tiger Award (given to films that "give young filmmakers a voice" and "push boundaries") at the 2014 International Film Festival Rotterdam,[11] and the Jury Prize, the Critics' Prize, and the Audience Award at the 2014 Deauville Asian Film Festival.[12][13][14]

The Rotterdam jury praised it as "a skillfully crafted and highly accomplished debut. Deviating from classiciststructure, this film lures the spectator to participate in the pleasures of storytelling through an extraordinary and intricate narrative puzzle."[15][16]

Han Gong-ju was released in theaters on April 17, 2014.

The film is a coming-of-age story about a high school student, the titular Han Gong-ju, who loses her friend after both become victims of a terrible gang rape incident and is pressured to leave her home and move to another school by the perpetrators' parents. To escape scandal, she finds herself living in the home of her former teacher's mother in a different city. After transferring to a new school, the withdrawn and traumatized Gong-ju keeps to herself and tries to move on from what happened. But she is befriended by Eun-hee, who convinces her to join an a cappella club. When news gets out of Gong-ju's new hobby, a group of parents of her former classmates causes a stir. Living with a stranger and cold to her new classmates, it takes a long time for Gong-ju's troubled past to catch up with her, but when it does the revelation is devastating.[17][18]


Chun Woo-hee as Han Gong-ju
Jung In-sun as Eun-hee
Kim So-young as Hwa-ok
Lee Young-lan as Ms. Cho
Kwon Beom-taek as Police substation chief
Jo Dae-hee as Lee Nan-do
Choi Yong-jun as Dong-yoon
Kim Hyun-joon as Min-ho
Yoo Seung-mok as Gong-ju's father
Sung Yeo-jin as Gong-ju's mother
Kim Jung-suk as New husband of Gong-ju's mother
Son Seul-gi as Min-suh
Lee Chung-hee (actor) as Chung-hee
Kim Ye-won as Ye-won
Lee Ja-yeon as Ja-yeon
Ha Jeong-hee as Homeroom teacher
Im Dong-seok as Dong-yoon's father
Min Kyung-jin as Principal

Box office[edit]

Han Gong-ju was released on just over 200 screens (a sizeable exposure for a Korean independent film), and through strong word of mouth, it was a hit with critics and audiences. On its opening day on April 17, 2014, approximately 10,000 people watched the film, but this increased at an unprecedented pace, crossing the 100,000 admissions mark (an enormous benchmark for a Korean independent production) in just nine days, which was quicker than the pace of recent indie favorites, such as Breathless (2009) in 19 days and Bedevilled (2010) in ten. As of April 29, it reached the 150,000 audience mark, breaking the record of Jiseul (2013), which sold 140,490 tickets in 12 days.[19]

By May 9, Han Gong-ju exceeded 200,000 viewers, making it one of the most successful Korean independent films of all time. Amid the opening of such large scale commercial films as The Fatal Encounter, The Target and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, it continued to attract average audiences of 2,000 a day.[20] At the end of its run, the film had a total of 223,297 admissions.
18th Busan International Film Festival
CGV Movie Collage Award
Han Gong-ju
Citizen Reviewers' AwardWon
13th Marrakech International Film Festival
Golden StarWon
43rd International Film Festival Rotterdam
Tiger AwardWon
16th Deauville Asian Film Festival
Jury PrizeWon
Critics' PrizeWon
Audience AwardWon
18th Fantasia International Film Festival
Audience Award, Best Asian Film - SilverWon
14th Director's Cut Awards
Best New ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best Independent Film DirectorLee Su-jinWon
23rd Buil Film Awards[21]
Best FilmHan Gong-juNominated
Best ActressChun Woo-heeNominated
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinNominated
Best New ActressChun Woo-heeNominated
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinNominated
34th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards[22]
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinWon
Critics' Top 10Han Gong-juWon
51st Grand Bell Awards[23]
Best ActressChun Woo-heeNominated
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinNominated
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinNominated
15th Women in Film Korea Awards
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
35th Blue Dragon Film Awards[24]
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinWon
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinNominated
Best EditingChoi Hyun-sookNominated
6th KOFRA Film Awards[25][26]
Best FilmHan Gong-juWon
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Discovery AwardChun Woo-heeWon
10th Max Movie Awards
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best Independent FilmHan Gong-juWon
20th Chunsa Film Art Awards[27]
Best ActressChun Woo-heeNominated
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinNominated
2nd Wildflower Film Awards[28][29]
Grand PrizeHan Gong-juWon
Best Director (Narrative Film)Lee Su-jinNominated
Best ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinNominated
Best CinematographyHong Jae-sikNominated
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinNominated
51st Baeksang Arts Awards[30]
Best FilmHan Gong-juNominated
Best New DirectorLee Su-jinNominated
Best New ActressChun Woo-heeWon
Best ScreenplayLee Su-jinNominated