• Early Filmmakers
  • Newsreels
  • Films from North Korea and the Chongryon Film Studio
  • Chronicling the Sixties
  • Chronicling the Seventies
  • Chronicling the Eighties
  • Chronicling the Nineties
  • Zainichi History
  • Testament of the Times
  • Ogawa Shinsuke and Filipina
  • Foreign Residents of Tokyo
  • The NDU and Taiwanese
  • The New Generation of Zainichi Filmmakers
  • Films from South Korea
  • Films from Japan
  • Testament of the Times

    1. Mori Zenkichi
    2. Pak Su-nam
    3. Maeda Kenji

     1 Mori Zenkichi

    Mori Zenkichi has many faces: playwright, writer for TV and radio, Noh critic, and film director. This film appeals to the people of the world on behalf of the Korean hibakusha (victims of the atomic bomb), who have endured countless tragedies, and in memory of the reprehensible death of the Koreans who were killed by the bomb.

    To the People of the World: A Record of Korean A-bomb Victims

    (“Sekai no hito e: Chosenjin hibakusha no kiroku”)

    - JAPAN / 1981 / Japanese / Color / 16mm / 47 min

    Director, Producer: Mori Zenkichi
    Photography: Kim Duk-chul, Kishi Hiroaki, Kimitsu Ko
    Editing: Nagao Yoshiyuki, Takahashi Hiroko
    Sound: Nakazato Katsunori, Aihara Masayuki, Miyazaki Masazumi
    Music: Goto Hideo, Kojima Tomoyuki, AXIS, Mizutani Tadanobu, Ishijo Taro, Tomita Michiko
    Location Sound: Koike Junichi
    Sound Effect: Ogawa Masao
    Narrator: Nakanishi Taeko
    Assistant: Oh Choong-kong
    Production Committee: Society for A Record of Korean A-bomb Victims
    Source: Yuzawa Kazuki (“Yawarakaimizu”)

    After his previous film To the Children of the World (1979), which depicted actual conditions faced by atomic bomb victims in Hiroshima, was honored with a prize at a film festival in Leipzig, Mori Zenkichi was asked by an organization of Korean atomic bomb victims in Hiroshima to make a film about them. Production started with money borrowed by mortgaging some of his own land.


     2 Pak Su-nam

    Pak Su-nam, known as the author of The Collected Letters of Ri Chin’u and Crime, Death and Love, was involved in the production of these two films. The films draw together historical testimony regarding the North and South Korean hibakusha in Hiroshima, and the issues of forced relocation and military comfort women in Okinawa.

    The Other Hiroshima: Korean A-bomb Victims Tell Their Story

    (“Mou hitotsu no Hiroshima: Ariran no uta”)

    - JAPAN / 1987 / Japanese / Color / 16mm / 58 min

    Director, Narrative Structure, Planning: Pak Su-nam
    Photography: Otsu Koshiro, Hoshino Kinichi
    Editing: Tomizuka Ryoichi
    Sound: Katto Isamu
    Music: Hara Masami
    Production Committee: Aoyama Kikaku (Yi Hae-son), Song of Arirang Production Committee
    Source: Pak Su-nam

    Living in a slum damaged by the atomic bomb and watching elderly first-generation zainichi hibakusha (atomic bomb survivors) pass away one after another, Pak felt compelled to break their silence with this documentary, her first. Using up all her savings and going into debt, she teamed up with cinematographer Otsu Koshiro and collected these testimonials from zainichi North and South Koreans living in Hiroshima and South Korean hibakusha visiting Japan for medical treatment. Although medical treatment for South Korean hibakusha began only in 1980, it was suspended in 1986, thus galvanizing support for this film.

    Song of Arirang: Voices from Okinawa

    (“Ariran no uta: Okinawa kara no shogen”)

    - JAPAN / 1991 / Japanese / Color / 16mm / 100 min

    Director, Producer: Pak Su-nam
    Photography: Otsu Koshiro, Miyauchi Ichitoku
    Editing: Tomizuka Ryoichi
    Sound: Katto Isamu
    Music: Hara Masami
    Production Committee: Song of Arirang Production Committee
    Source: Pak Su-nam

    Pak Su-nam followed The Other Hiroshima with this film focusing on accounts of Okinawa during World War II. In Okinawa, which was sacrificed to forestall an invasion of Japan’s main islands, Korean men were conscripted as “war laborers” and Korean women were enlisted as “comfort women.” Gathering testimony from zainichi Koreans, South Koreans and Japanese who were actually there, this film presents a more accurate view of history. The director has said that she made the film “as a requiem for those who died and to bring those souls back to life among us.” Accordingly, the final scene features an unforgettable requiem dance entitled “Arirang.”


     3 Maeda Kenji

    Maeda Kenji, who with films such as Resumes of the Gods (1988) and The Fluctuating Voices of Folklore (1991) has consistently traced Korean cultures in Japan, made this full-length documentary film about the history of the forced relocation and forced labor of Koreans from materials gathered from the Japanese areas of Okinawa, South Korea and China.

    Telling the Stories of a Million Lives: Lamentation of Forced Korean Relocation and Labor

    (“Hyakumannin no shinsetaryon: Chosenjin kyosei renko/kyosei rodo no han”)

    - JAPAN / 2000 / Japanese / Color / 16mm / 225 min

    Director, Script, Producer: Maeda Kenji
    Photography: Kitamura Tokuo
    Music: Imai Shigeyuki
    Narrator: Takayama Maki
    Assistant Directors: Cho Hyun-soo, Lee Dae
    Planning, Production Company, Source: Eizo Hanuru

    This is a full-length documentary film focusing on “the forced relocation and labor of Koreans.” Maeda Kenji, who has persistently followed the culture of Koreans who were brought or came to Japan, spent four years completing this film. The work consists of five sections: The Association of the Pacific War Bereaved in Kwangju, Between Life and Death . . . , Former Military Comfort Women, The Emperor and Matsushiro and Atomic Bomb Hibakusha. Interviews were conducted by Maeda; Lee Ui-chik, who is second-generation zainichi and representative of the production company Eizo Hanuru; and Tezuka Yo, director of Human Conceit: The World of Director Kamei Fumio (1991).