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WOMAN IS THE FUTURE OF MAN
aka YEOJANEUN NAMJAUI MIRAEDA


Year: 2004
USA: New Yorker Films
Cast: Yoo Jitae, Kim Taewoo, Sung Hyunah
Director: Hong Sangsoo
Country: South Korea
Language: Korean (English subtitles)
USA: 88 mins
USA Release Date: 3 March 2006 (Limited Release - New York)

Synopsis

As the first snow falls on Seoul, two childhood friends reunite over food and drinks at a local noodle shop. Hunjoon (Kim Taewoo) has just returned from the US where he had been studying filmmaking. With aspirations to write a screenplay and shoot his first picture, he's quick to point out to his buddy Munho (Yoo Jitae) that he would consider a job teaching at a university to pay the bills, but it's a compromise he hopes not to have to make. Munho is a teacher himself. A university arts professor with dreams of tenure, Munho has married and moved into a beautiful home since his buddy Hunjoon set off for America. As the two old friends chat about the years gone by, the drinks continue to pour and their musing inevitably evokes the beautiful Sunhwa (Sung Hyunah/former Miss Korea).

Sunhwa and Hunjoon dated prior to his leaving for the States. Although he promised to continue the relationship during his studies abroad, he instead abandoned her and their proposed future together. The two former lovers haven't spoken to each other in years, but nostalgia has kicked in and Hunjoon decides he'd like to see her again. Munho knows that Sunhwa has settled in a neighboring town not far from where the two friends have been carousing, but he wavers in joining Hunjoon on his spur-of-the-moment drunken quest to surprise her. Unbeknownst to Hunjoon, Munho seduced a heartbroken and vulnerable Sunhwa shortly after Hunjoon left for the US. While he too is curious about seeing Sunhwa again, Munho's lasting friendship with Hunjoon could be threatened by such a reunion. However, Hunjoon's persistence and Munho's shared desire to see Sunhwa prevails and the two best friends set off on the trail of the woman they once both loved.

Sunhwa proves easy to track down. She's still working at the hotel bar that Munho recalls Sunhwa telling him about the last time he spoke to her. She's in the middle of her shift but agrees to meet with Hunjoon and Munho after work. The guys decide to wait for her at a nearby restaurant where they kill time drinking and reminiscing. As Hunjoon continues to retrace his relationship with Sunhwa, Munho begins to grow agitated. It's clear that each of them were drawn to her in different ways and, hinting at his affair with Sunhwa, Munho trashes Hunjoon for idealizing a relationship that he can't remember. As tensions rise between the two old friends, Sunhwa arrives at the restaurant and invites both of her former lovers back to her apartment for a reunion that neither Hunjoon nor Munho could have possibly been prepared for.










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