The Relation between South Korean Film Industry and Hollywood

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South Korea has an ever growing movie industry, which outlines Korean way of life in the past century and the current situation in the country. The South Korean film industry is often at the mercy of political governance. There is a lot of government involvement in the movie industry. Despite the local problems, the South Korean industries are still attractive to the global viewers (Ho, 1986).

South Korean movies are enjoying increased success since 1950s where it has been going through the golden age. The industry is going through a lot of transformation where many people from this country are watching their local movies more than those from abroad. The reason behind this trend is the legal framework, which is placing limits on the number of foreign films that a theatre has to show in a certain year. The law states that the domestic movies have to receive 73 days in the theaters (May, 1987).

According to Kerry (1997), Hollywood is a movie industry that has a long history dating back to 1911. The industry is currently doing very well thus why as it attracts a large number of viewers around the world. The industry is large and is continuing to attract more actors and viewers each and every year.

This paper aim is to analyze the relation between South Korean tradition and Hollywood. In order to come up with such relationships, the paper shall focus on aspects like the relationship that exists between these two film industries, the effect of Hollywood exports to South Korea. It shall end by looking at the differences between these two industries to draw a clear picture of the two industries respectively.

There is a prominent movie in South Korea whose, which is popular   since it sells well even in the United States of America. The film ‘The Shiri’ possesses similar features to some Hollywood blockbusters. This implies that the makers and directors of this movie are not original in their script organization. The movie seeks to emulate Hollywood movies at the same time that it offers a fantasy of local resistance to Hollywood (May, 1989).

Most of the Korean blockbusters are ‘asymmetrical counterparts’ of Hollywood blockbusters since they lack the same level of ‘hegemonic power’ over the international market. Many scholars in South Korea and   the movie industry believe it is hard to emulate Hollywood.  Kim says that 'The Shiri' is a movie that tries hard to emulate Hollywood movies from pre-production and distribution. He refers to such a situation as an ‘America complex’; other commentators’ argue that there is lack of originality in the Asian movies (Ho, 1986).

Most of the movies are trying to embrace globalization and international appeal. This is forcing producers to embrace Hollywood’s generic conventions. They also relentlessly pursue the Hollywood mode of production so as to create a blockbuster with potential to support the national film industry (Kerry et al, 1997).

According to May (1989), A movie like The Good, the bad, and the Culturally Inauthentic copies most of its techniques and style from the Hollywood movies. Most of the analysis’s refer to it as the ‘an Asian American’ movie, which aims at attracting viewers from all walks of life. Kim, one of the analysts’ refers to the movie producer as ‘the most cold-hearted Korean I have ever seen’ in reference to the producer’s lack of originality and adherence to his own culture. He says that the script writer dwells on American style of writing to explain the Korean cultural context.

The imports of Hollywood movies in South Korea are increasing competition thus leading to the streamlining of the industry. Hollywood as an industry has a huge financial base and produces more movies at a low cost. The local firms thus are relatively expensive thus forcing the local citizens to opt for the cheaper movies from Hollywood (May, 1989). Most of the Hollywood movies that find their way in Korea are action movies; this is making most of the movie makers produce action movies because they are popular among the local citizens. It is evident that the South Korean movies are copying the Hollywood movies because of the impact of the American movies on the local scene (Ho, 1986).

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