The film traces the life of Hwang Jin Yi, a 16th century gisaeng - a female entertainer-artist similar to the Japanese geisha - remembered as both a distinguished poet and alluring femme fatale.
Born into a respected noble family, the charming Hwang leads a peaceful life in the city of Songdo. But when her scandalous birth secrets are revealed, she voluntarily chooses the lowly life of a gisaeng.
Hwang, brought to life by Song Hye-gyo, evolves from an innocent damsel to smoldering temptress. Song gives an impressive performance of her character's winding emotional journey, and breaks away from her image as a sweet-faced starlet.
"Hwang" is original in both senses of the word. The film portrays not so much the artistic gisaeng we saw hitherto in other works, but the human Hwang based on the novel of the same title by North Korean writer Hong Seok-jung.
Hong conducted thorough research in the gisaeng's hometown of Gaeseong, and his heroine is considered to most closely reflect the actual historical figure. From there, he created a fictional love story and won the 2004 Manhae Prize for Literature, one of the most prestigious literary awards in South Korea.
In the film, Hwang spurns the decadence and hypocrisy of the noble class, and lives with a sense of independence that women today can look up to. But beneath her confidence and indifference, Hwang is a heartbroken woman torn between her lover Nomi, played by heartthrob Yoo Ji-tae, and the powerful district magistrate Hui-yeol, impersonated by Ryu Seung-ryong.
Title: Hwang Jin Yi Also Known As: 황진이 / Hwang Jin-yi Country: South Korea Language: Korean Subtitle: English Year: 2007 Genre: Period, Historical, Drama
Song Hye-Kyo - Hwang Jin-Yi
Yoo Ji-Tae - Nomi
Jo Seung-Yeon - Byeok Kye-Soo
Min Bok-Gi - Ho Jang
Lee Mi-So - Hwang Jin-Yi's female servant
Ye Soo-Jung - Hwang Jin-Yi's mother
Park Sung-Il - gambler 2
Jin Yong-Ok - person who beats others
Son Jong-Hak - horse stable owner
Director: Chang Yoon-Hyun Writer(s): Kim Hyeon-Jeong Producer(s): n/a
Download Hwang Jin Yi 황진이 (2007) (w/English Subtitles):