December 29, 2007

"Run DMZ": Breakdancing for Reunification

Sigh, these days the Demilitarized Zone/Panmunjeom gets no respect -- tourists smile and don't take it seriously, politicians and businessmen regularly cross the once-forbidden dividing line to the other side, even US soldiers have disappeared from the scene ... Now, a breakdancing video with the backdrop of the DMZ? (from the upcoming Benson Lee's documentary Planet B-Boy)

For this kind of artistic creativity that challenges the Cold War status quo, some artists have gone to jail (until a decade ago) for violating the National Security Law in South Korea. This also suggests that the inter-Korea barrier and distrust are breaking apart. The Panmunjeom will likely become a real historical museum soon ....

For more serious take on the DMZ, yet with hint on Korean reconciliation, see the 2002 South Korean film Joint Security Area by director Park Chan Wook of the Oldboy fame, which depicts Korean soldiers from both sides fraternizing on their own during tense standoff at the border (a parody photo of the movie at left suggests a breakdown of animosities). Incidentally, the breakdancing video was shot at the same movie set that was built for the JSA movie.

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