Lido Cinemas

2K RESTORATION — Australian Premiere

Deemed a masterpiece…a story of music, family, toxicity and ambition…the production feels like a love letter to Korea and its traditions.” – Reinier Brands

Sopyonje focuses on a family of travelling ‘p’ansori’ singers and their devotion to a Korean traditional song form that rivals the Portuguese Fado or the American Blues in its use of aching, sung laments. Sopyonje was the first Korean film seen by over one million people in Seoul, and the major Korean international festival hit of the 1990s. “The ‘seopyeonje’ is a song described as sorrowful and tender - there are few films more tender, if not more sorrowful than this.” (Wally Hammond, Time Out Film Guide). 2K restoration presented with the support of the Australia-Korea Foundation. Co-presented with the Korean Film Archive (KOFA).

Introduced by Russell Edwards and the director of the Korean Film Archive, Kim Hong-joon (video), at the Ritz Cinemas and by Andrew Jackson, Monash University, and Kim Hong-joon (video) at the Lido Cinemas.

“Seopyeonje is a film of profound cultural importance, demonstrating the significance of Pansori and reactions to growing Japanese and Western musical influences.” - Koreanscreen.com  

There are still moments that bring tears to my eyes. These tears of joy and sorrow are surely evidence of the work’s power…and the almost unique ability of Korean culture to give words to what is essentially a universal experience.” – Jeremy Neideck   


Korean director Im Kwon-taek (b. 1936) made over 100 features in a career made resonant with local box office hits, yet he still broke through local censorship taboos, gained break-out international film festival invitations and received western critical attention for Korean cinema, inspiring South Korea’s current generation of international arthouse film making superstars.  

Our 2024 festival screenings of Sopyonje in Sydney and Melbourne begin a short, follow-up season (in Sydney only) showcasing some of Im’s other key films, Jagko Mismatched Nose (1980), Ticket (1986) and Festival (1996), as well as the dynamic cinema restoration program of the Korean national film archive KOFA (see Webinar below).

See www.cinemareborn.com.au for full details about Cinema Reborn’s Im Kwon-taek season, screening at Ritz Cinemas, Randwick throughout May. 

Season presented with the support of the Australia-Korea Foundation. Co-presented with the Korean Film Archive (KOFA). Supported by the Korean Cultural Centre Sydney.  


Friday 3 May from 2:00 PM AET 

Join with the Korean Cultural Centre Sydney for a webinar exploring Im Kwon-taek’s career and the Korean Film Archive (KOFA)’s acclaimed program to restore and give global access to Korean filmmaking heritage. Join us online via https://koreanculture.org.au/, with guests including film critic, academic and Korean cinema expert Russell Edwards, and from Seoul, critic and Parasite subtitler Darcy Parquet.  

Webinar free, but bookings required. See www.cinemareborn.com.au. for more details. 

Webinar presented by the Korean Cultural Centre Sydney.  


Unclassified 15+




South Korea


Korean (English Subtitles)


Kim Myung-gon, Jung-hae Oh, Kim Kyu-chul


Im Kwon-taek

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