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Barefoot Dream


Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Center for Korean Studies Auditorium at 6:30 PM

Korea/Japan/Timor Leste (2010, 121 min)
Korean/Tetun w/English subtitles

Director: Kim Tae-gyun
Screenplay: Kim Tae-gyun
Music: Kim Joon-seok
Cast: Park Hee-soon (Coach Kim Won-kang), Ko Chang-seok (Park In-gi), Francisco Varela (Ramos), Fernando Pinto (Motavio), Junior Da Costa (Tua), Marlina Simoes (Josephine), Kei Shimizu (Dozyo), Im Won-hee (Director Poong), Kim Seo-hyung (Reporter Yu Bo-hyeon), Jo Jin-woong (James)

In this true story, Park Hee Soon plays Kim Won Kang, a former player for the Korean national team who has fallen on hard times, reduced to travelling around and scraping a living through cons and shady schemes. After ending up in East Timor, he decides to open a sports store, hoping to sell football equipment and clothing to the locals. Sadly, his business doesn’t take off, and in an effort to make some money back he tries to loan out football boots to the youngsters who play in the nearby park. Although they can’t afford to pay him, he finds himself becoming involved in their lives, and takes on the role as their coach, aiming to make them into a team and take them to the International Youth Soccer Championship in Japan.

The rest of the film is carried by the local actors, all of whom are very naturalistic. The young children are especially impressive, and are thankfully never manipulated into being the kind of cute pity magnets that might have been used to tug at the viewer’s heartstrings for cheap sentimentality. This is very much to Kim’s credit, and it lifts “A Barefoot Dream” up several notches from the usual sports underdog story…and it makes for solid, humanistic entertainment, having a big heart worn proudly on its sleeve.

-James Mudge, Beyond

Please support the filmmakers and buy this film here!
Reminder…dress warmly, the auditorium is heavily air-conditioned.