Fisherman's Fire (Eohwa) (1939)|
Director : Ahn Chul-yeong
Production Company : Keuk Kwang Film Co.
Date of Theatrical Release : 1939-01-07
Opening Theater : Yak Cho
Genre : Melo
Producer : Ahn Chul-yeong
Screenplay(Adaptation) : Suh Byeong-ok
Director of PhotoGraphy : Lee Byeong-mok
Gaffer : Choi Jin
Music : Kim Kwan
Art Director : Won Woo-jun
Editor : Kool Nae Kyeong Sam (Japan)
Sound/Recording : Kyo Yang Boo
Park Hak, Nah Woong, Park Jung-kyeong, Yoon Bi-yang
Fisherman Choon-sam (Yoon Buk-yang) is suffering financially because of a prolonged scarcity of fish. Pestered by miserly Mr. Jang to pay back his debt, Choon-sam goes out to sea in hopes of a catch but meets a watery end instead. As payment for the debt, Mr. Jang tries to take Choon-sam's daughter In-soon as his second wife. Meanwhile, In-soon (Park Noh-kyung) is mutually in love with Chun-suk (Park Hak), but torn about the suggestion of Ok-bun (Chun Hyo-bong), who lives in Seoul, to join her in the city. In order to get a job and pay back her father's debt, In-soon follows Mr. Jang's son Chul-soo to Seoul, not knowing that he harbors illicit intentions toward her. Violated by Chul-soo and emotionally distraught, In-soon goes to live with Ok-bun. However, she fails to find employment and is so tormented by the burden she is imposing on her friend that she decides to become a gisaeng. Chun-suk, who has come to Seoul to find In-soon, finds out what happened between her and Chul-soo and returns home with a broken heart. In the end, In-soon tries to commit suicide but is saved by Chun-suk's love for her, and the two of them return home together.
Fisherman's Fire is one of the films from the late Japanese colonial period that the Korean Film Archive (KOFA) obtained through the China Film Archive (CFA) in 2004. Along with Homeless Angel (Jib-eobsneun cheonsa), Story of Sim-chung (Sim Cheongjeon), and Military Train (Gun-yong-yeolcha), it is one of just four films from the 1930s whose existence in Korea has been verified. However, since a mere 10 minutes or so of footage remains from Story of Shim Cheong and Military Trainwas the first film to serve as a government mouthpiece, it would not be an exaggeration to say that there are only two movies in the true sense of the term dating from 1930s Korea. Although it is hardly a polished masterpiece, Fisherman's Fireis an important work that allows us to judge the level of technique, form, and content that characterized Korean films of the period. The abundant sights of Seoul (called Kyeongsungat the time) that crop up in the latter half of the film alone are sufficient to endow Fisherman's Fire with historical value. The film alsoprovides fleeting glimpses into the values and practices of so-called "modern boys" and "modern girls" at the time.
Director Bio: Ahn Chul-yeong (?-?)
Birthplace and date unknown. His education andexperience can only be deduced from a short introductory article found in the January 31, 1940 issue of The Chosun Ilbo. The article reports that he came back from study abroad in Germany and established the Keuk Kwang Film Co where he first produced a film called Fisherman's Fire (Eohwa). It reports that he was not only a talented director, but also had a deep understanding of photography. Following Fisherman's Fire (Eohwa), he wrote, directed and edited a documentary on the life of Korean immigrants in Hawaii on 16-millimeter film called The Rose of Sharon (Mugunghwa) (1948). He was forcibly taken to North Korea during the Korean War. (References: Kim Jong-won and others, The Dictionary of Korean Film Directors published by the Korea Film Directors’ Society Incorporated, Kookhak Community Corporation)