Korean Documentaries

Film:  Planet Of Snail (Dalpaengieui Byeol / 달팽이의 별)

Year:  2011

Director:  Seung-Jun Yi

Venues:  ICA Institute of Contemporary Arts), London and the Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow




Other Information:

The screening on 23rd June, 2012 includes a special Q & A, with the director.


A dog and a snail…

oh what tales…

… and tails.

Dogwoof, you see, introduced me to many a movie including Sweetgrass and Lucy Walker’s Countdown To Zero.

It has also distributed all these titles Restrepo, The Coca Cola Case, Luxury Star, Afghan Star, Black Gold, The Devil Came On Horseback, Les Petites Vacances, The Age Of Stupid, The End of The Line, Food, Inc., Bananas!, Mugabe and the White African, Vanishing of the Bees, Dreams of a Life, Collapse, The Last Train Home, Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present, Bombay Beach, Tabloid, The Interrupters, Amreeka, Gasland, Bobby Fischer Against the World and many more.

That may seem a long list but I felt it was necessary as it should be so much more of a household name than it is.  Many, just as well known titles – if not more well known – can be found in the full listing here:  www.dogwoof.com/FILMS

Asian Films

So what about the Snail aspect?  Well, that’s clear in this new film’s title, for a start.  The snail-tale for me began with “Life in a day” and it’s epic imagery of such a creature scaling a miniature globe.  A review of that film is here for your perusal:  Life In A Day – YouTube-linked-film.  Secondly, in the recent interview Mini Mini conducted with Japanese actor DenDen he revealed the meaning – or meanings – in his one-word name, one of these being related to the word, ‘snail’.

Anyhow, I can’t recall where I first read about the award-winning “Planet Of Snail” but it could have been from the brilliant KoBiz iPad application.

More about his film?  Well, it features a couple of my current loves – not ‘a love’ as in a girl, but Korean cinema and Documentaries.  [I’m actually making my own Korean-themed docu… More on that shortly]

Korean People

So… here’s the press release:

Planet of Snail

WINNER – Best Feature-Length Documentary – IDFA, 2011

In cinemas 22 June 2012

“An elegant and moving documentary… a real joy” Screen Daily

Seung-Jun Yi’s second feature Planet of Snail, which won the prestigious Best Feature Length Documentary prize at IDFA, is a lyrical and gentle story that deftly touches on the world of disability.  Out in UK cinemas 22 June 2012 courtesy of Dogwoof, Planet of Snail is an unique, refreshing, often funny film that demystifies what life means for people who live with physical impairments.

The film focuses on the relationship between Young-Chan who is deaf-blind and describes himself as a ‘snail’ because he only uses his tactile senses and his wife Soon-Ho who has a spinal injury. They communicate by touch – gently tapping on each other’s fingers, and navigate the trials of daily life with slow, tender shared experiences; the changing of a light bulb is an hour-long, methodical process. But Young-Chan and Soon-Ho will not be together forever and she will not always be there as his eyes and ears to the world, the couple needs to learn the painful process of navigating life without each other.


Young-Chan comes from the Planet of Snail. Dwellers of this tiny planet are deaf and blind, and call themselves ‘snails’ because they rely only on their tactile senses, and communicating by touch.

When Young-Chan came to Earth, there was nothing Earth offered him. Worse was that nobody understood his language. When he was desperate, an angel walked into his life. Soon-Ho is a woman who knows what loneliness is about and where Young-Chan’s deeply rooted pain comes from. She soon becomes an inseparable part of his life. She is a wife, a soul mate and a window and a bridge to the world for him. Each mundane moment of every routine day becomes tender shared experiences whether it be the hour-long process of changing a simple light bulb, hugging trees and smelling pine cones on the threshold of spring, or the feeling of raindrops landing on the skin. Young-Chan also discovers an amazing world under his fingers. Since he learned to read books with braille, hopes and dreams began to grow in Young-Chan’s heart. He dreams of writing a book. However, Soon-Ho worries about Young-Chan’s future because she cannot always be there for him as she is suffering from her own problem of spine disability. The couple now needs to learn how to survive alone. While Soon-Ho uneasily spends her first day alone waiting for his return, Young-Chan goes out for the biggest adventure of his life.


“Petite Petite Planet…:

Find this Trailer and other Mini-er Movies here at:





“Virally Vended”

Further details of Dogwoof Films are below.  However, before you rush to clickety-click-away I’d like to use this space to mention the recent mindless riots experienced here in the UK. Did you know that these riots caused hundreds of thousands of pounds in damages and loss to our favourite independent film distributors? These are, essentially… Arrow Films, Artifical Eye, The BFI, Crabtree Films, Cine-Asia, Dogwoof Films, Exposure Cinema, Eureka, Kaleidoscope Films, Left Films, Masters of Cinema, Metrodome Films, New Wave Films, Peccadillo Pictures, Revolver Entertainment, Showbox Home Entertainment, Terracotta Distribution, Third Window Films and Warp Films.

So, with the latter in mind it is even more important to spread the word, virally about these unfortunate vendors. On that note I leave you with these links… all which will, in some way assist in keeping such films to be distributed here in the so-called land of milk & honey.







Thanks for your support… in every way.


A little more on the distributor:

About Dogwoof

Dogwoof is the UK’s leading independent documentary film distributor. Founded in 2004, initial releases had a strong focus on social issues: Black Gold was widely credited with shifting Starbucks’ position on fairtrade; The Age of Stupid led to the 10:10 campaign; The End of the Line was largely responsible for Marks & Spencer and Pret a Manger changing their sustainable fishing policy. Recent Dogwoof releases include the 2011 Oscar®-nominated documentaries Gasland and Restrepo, which stands as iTunes’ highest selling documentary in the UK, and also Countdown to Zero which premiered in a 50-site simultaneous satellite feed. UK documentary Dreams of a Life premiered at the London Film Festival and was followed by a series of director and cast screenings across London, resulting in an unprecedented 11 week run in Odeon cinemas in London’s West End. Also in 2012, Dogwoof launched two new initiatives: http://popupcinema.net/ which seeks to empower local entrepreneurs to screen Dogwoof films locally and in non-traditional venues, and http://dogwoofsales.com/ , a consultancy agent-based service designed to help documentary filmmakers promote and sell their films globally through their network of fellow distributors and broadcasters. For further information please visit www.dogwoof.com