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Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East? (1989)

Cast: Pan-Yong Yi, Pan-Yong Yi, Won-Sop Sin, more...
Director: Bae Yong-kyun, Bae Yong-kyun
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Image Entertainment
Genre: Drama, Foreign, Korea
Running Time: 137 min.
Languages: Korean
Subtitles: English
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The title refers to a Zen riddle for which there is no answer. Noted painter Bae Yong-kyun spent several years devoted to carefully and lovingly creating this challenging, meditative and exquisitely photographed film. A young man aspires to the priestly life and so travels to a remote mountain hermitage to study under an aged Zen Master whose corporeal days are numbered. The master lives alone there with a small orphan boy. As the days slowly pass, the master occasionally shares his wisdom with his followers. Much time is spent following the boy as he learns about the nature of life in the smallest of ways. Sometimes the older acolyte has brief memories of the past he recently left. ~ Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide

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More mainstream but still beautifully made story of the Dalai Lama's coming of age

The Color of Pomegranates
Fans of langorous, poetic films about spiritual odysseys shouldn't miss this one

GreenCine Member Reviews

I'm not the target audience by Texan99 September 4, 2010 - 11:57 AM PDT
I'll speak up for that portion of the potential viewing audience who aren't very receptive to Eastern mysticism. As long as our heroes were wrestling with the dilemma of how to distance themselves from all human feeling and duty in order to achieve freedom and enlightenment, my attention was drifting. What this Westerner could care about, though, was the subplot about the young boy who, in the most natural ways of boys, brings down a bird with a rock, then can't escape the resulting remorse and dread when he hears its grieving mate's call. While he works out his version of the problem of original sin, we're immersed in a paradise of South Korean mountainside, with occasional jarring side trips into the human hell of a nearby city. There is also a brief interlude with a ritual dance that's shocking in its beauty and grace.

Give your self time by dvshjs March 25, 2006 - 4:40 PM PST
2 out of 2 members found this review helpful
This is a movie that you may want to set some time to the side for. Its long its slow it can seem boring but let it just be. It is a very Buddhist movie, there is a great quote in it, "My body returns to its original condition. Blood and pus from my wounds will fall as dew from the night sky. I am insubstantial in the universe. But in the universe, there is nothing which is not me." Watch this.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 7.31)
32 Votes
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