Millions of Korean families were separated from one another in the 1950s when war broke out between the Soviet-occupied North and the American-controlled South. For more than a generation, families have not been able to visit, speak on the phone or even write each other. Tragically, the last survivors to remember a unified Korea are dying without ever having seen their grandchildren. Filmmaker Min Sook Lee examines the political reality with a journalist's eye and keen personal insight. To better understand the country she left as a child, Lee examines the consequences of history through the extraordinary experiences of ordinary Koreans. At a war memorial site, she meets a woman who has the fate of earning her livelihood by daily transforming her harrowing escape from North Korea into a story for tourists. Lee meets with elderly Koreans who yearn to see their loved ones just once before they die. One lucky family, the Kims, are winners in a surreal mass state-sanctioned family reunion in a facility in the North. Their meeting profoundly illuminates the cost of 50 years of separation and the challenges ahead for those who dream of reunification.
"this is a beautifully wrought film" - Bruce Kirkland/Toronto Sun
"a touching exploration" - Katie Clandy, AnE Vibe