This morning saw the premiere of Paranmanjang, a new film by Chan Wook Park filmed entirely on an iPhone 4. I assume that Park and co. didn’t also edit their project on the phone, though Apple would tell you that it is possible to do such a thing.
The poster and image in this post from a report in the Wall Street Journal’s Korea Realtime section. Here’s how they describe the film’s plot premise:
The [30 minutes] short is a fantastical tale that begins with a middle-aged man fishing one afternoon and then, hours later at night, catches the body of a woman. The panicked man tries to undo the intertwined fishing line, but he gets more and more entangled. He faints, then wakes up to find himself in the white clothes that the woman was wearing. The movie’s point of view then shifts to the woman and it becomes a tale of life and death from a traditional Korean point of view.
Perhaps knowing that the title, Paranmanjang translates to Ups and Downs will shed some light on that description.
The Journal also appraise the film’s cinematography:
The quality of the cinematography is quite good, except for a little shakiness in the beginning. And the fact that the screen is coarse works to the film’s advantage, especially on the night scenes given its life-and-death theme.
Park’s collaborator on the film was his brother, Park Chan-kyong, who the Journal describe as “a media artist”. What role he played in making this movie was not clear. Also not clear is where and how the film will be seen after its imminent limited engagement in just nine Korean cinemas, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see a download option on the Korean iTunes before too long. I did just carry out a check with the UK equivalent, but to no avail.
There’s also a Making-of film about Paranmanjang to come. Park himself said:
From hunting for a film location, shooting auditions, to doing a documentary on the filming process, everything was shot with the iPhone 4. We went through all the same film-making processes except that the camera was small.
I’ll be keeping an eye out for where this film might become available and be sure to fill you in. If you hear anything in the meantime, please let me know.