Hyung Cho on Slow Films
Z: I feel like you have a lot of knowledge about popular American movies it seems like.
H: Yeah maybe, because I watch them. But all of the people here watch American movies a lot I guess.
Z:I was surprised that you knew so many reference to Woody Allen and less mainstream movies.
H: When I was in undergrad I was in a cinema club. It’s like here at Yale The Whitney Center for Humanities has a Film Archive Center I guess. It’s part of Yale. So we likewise had a sort of screening facility, you know kind of like a Cinematek in my University. It was run by the club (a student organization). So we used that facility as our club room, we hang our there and study there.
So I was in the club so I watched a lot of movies there. There were a lot of serious cinephiles around me at the time. I wasn’t that serious, a cinephile so to speak, but I was really interested in watching the moviesâ€”especially because they were free. And there was a really nice collection of films so we would watch them and talk about them after.
Z: Did you do that during your whole undergrad?
H: NO, just about a year. Because after my military duty, I returned to the University as a junior. Then that year I was able to participate in clubs. But my senior I could because I had too much work. So just one year, I guess
Z: What do you mean you had to work? You had a job your senior year.
H: There were a lot of of things going, like figuring out internships, and like what I’m going to do after graduation. SO I did an internship at the studio of one of the alumni. It was okay. IT was cool to see how they workedâ€” so it was a good experience. And then I got busy just like other university students. Then I also had to start my thesis project. It was a little sad.
Just that you didn’t watch more films?
Yeah, it would have been really nice to start that first year. I mean, like as a freshman. Because the people in the club were really nice even though the people there already had concrete relationships.
Z: what was your favorite movie that you saw at the time?
H: I don’t know, we watched a lot at the time. I remember something like, “the Great Escape.”
Z: Is that the soccer one?
H: No, it’s about like world war II. Usually I’m not into really serious boring movies. Other than that I’m anxious to see more like 60’s / 70’s American movies. Like in between film maker’s movie (indie film maybe?) or audience type movies (more pop / blockbusters?). I don’t know, theres a lot of great movies.
Z: You like Woody Allen Movies?
H: Yeah, I like him a lot but. Recently, I don’t know about thatâ€¦But I think almost every graphic designers like Woody Allen movie because of his certain structure. I like his sarcasm. Recently the movies are different though.
Z: Have you seen Annie Hall?
H: Yeah, I think it was my first one. I really like it. It’s really romantic. I think maybe, I really like romance movies. I told Haeok about this film I saw on the plane on the way back from Korea. A Japanese movie called “My Tomorrow, Your Yesterday.” It’s kind of crazy.
Z: Whats it about?
H: it’s like two different dimensions that connect every 10 years or something. So for the woman, she’s getting younger and the man is getting older. They fell in love, she’s getting weirder and weirder. He doesn’t understand, but she later tells him that she’s from another dimensions. The first day from the guys perspective is the girls last day. And then they go in different temporal directions from there. So I interpret it kind of like a metaphor. So usually guys at the beginning of the relationship (maybe it’s just an asian thing) tries really hard to win a girls attention. But when the relationship is solid, he loses interest. But the women cares more then. So I think it’s a representation of that.
It’s pretty cheesy, but moving still. But I watched it on the airplane, so I don’t knowâ€¦
Z: So you like romance film in general?
Z: What other films do you like?
H: I like Punch Drunk Love. What else? There are so many.
Z: Did you see the one with Ryan Gosling?
Z: No, but that one is so good. The one that is a musical?
H: Ah, La La Land. I didn’t like it. I like Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, but I don’t know why it got so much hype. Why it won best picture last yearâ€¦
I really like calm movies where nothing happens. Like this film called, “Paterson.” It’s a Jim Jameson movie. It’s about a bus driver who is a poet. So he writes poems. I think it’s kind of an homage for William Carlos Williams. It’s really nice. It has Adam Driver, as a driver.
Z: Why do you like movies like that?
H: I mean, I like other movies. Like I just saw Black Panther yesterday. But some how it’s more about, after you watch the movie you kind of have some kind of experience. Like you are still affected by the film afterwords. So this kind of movie makes me appreciate my life a little more. It maybe makes me more sensitive to tiny things. Or even bigger things other than myself. It’s good for my mental health I guess.
Z: I think movies like that leave me with a lingering calm afterwords too. There are some movies that feel like nothing happened and yet they leave a strong impression.
H: Or the movie is really uncanny, or uncomfortable, but strong. Like it penetrates to some deeper truth or something genuine. I like that sort of movie too. But sometimes that’s really hard to watch. I think of a movie called Time of the Gypsies.
Movies You Should See
Movies Mentioned (during recording)
- The Great Escape
- Annie Hall
- My Tomorrow, Your Yesterday
- Punch Drunk Love
- La La Land
- Black Panther
- Time of the Gypsies