Kim Jong Il’s latest film released

From the Washington Post:

New North Korean movie is proletariat pleaser
By Jon Herskovitz
8/11/2006

The king of the summer movie box office is none other than North Korea’s Dear Leader Kim Jong-il, or at least that is what the communist state’s official media has been saying this week.

The biggest movie sensation of the season has been the film made under Kim’s wise leadership called “Diary of a Student Girl,” the North’s KCNA news agency said.

“(It) is screened before full houses in Pyongyang every day, evoking lively response from people of all walks of life,” it said.

Unlike the big movies from Hollywood this summer, there are no pirates, animated cars or mutants making a last stand in the North Korean movie billed as a “close companion of life.”

North Korea’s student girl works with her younger sister in pursuit of scientific endeavors. Through their work they overcome hardships, better understand their parents and are instilled with pride in the nation and its military-first policy.

Even before it was released, official media said it would be listed as a masterpiece.

Minister of Culture Kang Nung-su praised the film as “the fruit borne under the wise leadership of Kim Jong-il, a great master in art,” KCNA reported.

And audiences indeed loved it: “The viewers make up their mind to live as the heroines do, saying that they want to see the film again,” the official agency said.

North Korea has made numerous movies that are low on special effects but high in messages that support the state’s communist ideology.

Kim’s official biography says the man known as the “Dear Leader” is an accomplished director who has made several award-winning films.

Kim is also suspected of kidnapping a South Korean director and his actress wife in order to boost North Korean cinema. Those close to him say he has a collection of thousands of movies.

North Koreans do not have a lot of choice when it comes to entertainment. Their radios have to be set to the official state station and they can get thrown in jail for watching foreign movies or listening to Western music.

As for Kim himself, it was not certain if he has sat through the latest movie. According to official media, he has not been seen for several weeks following Pyongyang’s decision to defy international warnings and test-fire seven missiles on July 5.

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