The City in the Water


Following the decade long construction of the Chungju Dam, which stretched from 1975 to 1985, a community was forever destroyed. explores what is left of the cities, small villages and rural communities that became submerged under the water. The Chungiu Dam has created a complex network of over 100 artificial lakes covering an area of 40 kms dramatically altering the landscape and the lives of the people who once called this place their home. This once prosperous city which once boasted over 600 plus households has now, over the course of 30 years, seen these reduced to just 8. Kim Eungsu’s audio-visual essay focuses on the histories of those who remain, eliciting memories from that which is lost. Engaging with the striking area and the people who have remained, the film’s intensity stems from the director’s approach to the landscape – he skims the water shot after shot in long pans creating a material tension between what’s visible and what’s not. He takes us on the board of a cruising tourist boat visiting the landscape, showing us how the lake has become something other than the history it contains, and turning all this into a memorable cinematic experience.

By Matthew Barrington

Film info
2014. Directed by Kim Eungsu, 80 mins.

Picturehouse Central, 06 Nov 15 6:30 pm

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