Himalaya, Where the Wind Dwells

Existential despair makes the journey from South Korea to Nepal in helmer Jeon-Soo-il's arty road movie "Himalaya, Where the Wind Dwells."

Existential despair makes the journey from South Korea to Nepal in the arty road movie “Himalaya, Where the Wind Dwells.” Using Choi Min-sik (“Oldboy”) to channel Albert Camus for moody poses in the Himalayan foothills, helmer Jeon-Soo-il (“The Bird Who Stops in the Air”) has technically improved, but unfortunately, his fascination with dullness is still paramount; accordingly, commercial potential is limited. Fests seeking dry cross-cultural collisions may want to look.

Fired from his job, divorced Korean office worker Choi (Choi) is enlisted to help his factory-owning brother with a dilemma involving an unseen Nepalese employee named Dorgy. Without explanation, pic jumps into a Kathmandu taxi, with Choi making his way to the isolated township of Jharkot. Greeted by Dorgy’s wife and son and using the boy’s English as lingua franca, Choi moves in with the family as the obtuse script applies mild Jarmuschian humor. Nepalese thesping is rough, but Choi is typically impressive. Limited English ability of all thesps means even native speakers would benefit from subtitles. Virtually monosyllabic script is occasionally augmented by somber Charles Mingus-like double bass; lensing is crisp throughout.

Himalaya, Where the Wind Dwells

South Korea

  • Production: A Show East, Zonbo Media presentation of a Dongnyuk Films production. (International sales: UMedia, Montreuil, France.) Produced by Kim Dong-joo, Jeon Soo-il. Directed, written by Jeon Soo-il.
  • Crew: Camera (color), Kim Sung-tai; editor, Kim In-soo, Noh Bong-seo; music, Kim Hyung-suk; production designer, Cho Youn-ah. Reviewed at Pusan Film Festival (Korean Panorama), Oct. 3, 2008. Original title: Barami mumoonun got, Himalaya. Korean, English, Nepalese dialogue. Running time: 95 MIN.
  • With: <b>With:</b> Choi Min-sik, Tsering Kipale Gurung, Tsering Sherpa.
  • Music By: