If Parasite’s success has left you craving more Korean films then Netflix is the place to go with plenty of films to sift through.
One of those films is Seoul Searching, a 2015 coming of age story directed by Benson Lee. Inspired by the director’s own experiences, Seoul Searching is about a group of foreign-born Korean teenagers who attend a camp to learn about their Korean heritage.
The films biggest strength is its ensemble cast that includes a variety of characters from different countries such as Sid “Stud Muffin”(Justin Chon) who wears a safety pin pierced through his ear and Madonna wannabe Grace (Jessika Van) – whose lip-syncing scene is one of the best in the flick and leaves the viewer feeling both amused and uncomfortable.
The movies eclectic cast of characters and the premise allow for a rollercoaster that chronicles the groups comedic catastrophes as they rebel against the camps conservative rules as well as the heart-breaking revelations they experience as a result.
As it is set in 1986, it is obvious the production team put in effort to ensure the costumes, music and mise-en-scène all reflect this seamlessly, however, the humour also suits the time period which is unsettling because the audience are confronted by the gritty, problematic reality of the contemporaneous mindset.
Despite this, the films timeless drama deals with many topics that Korea and the rest of the world still face today from suicide and adoption to sexism. The exceptional dual-language script along with realistic and heart-felt acting create flawed characters that worm their way into your heart.
At it’s core, Seoul Searching is a lively teen comedy filled with loveable , however, and for lovers of ‘The Breakfast Club’ it’s a must-watch.