RE-VERZIO Documentary Film Series
(Directed by Andrzej Fidyk, Poland & Norway, 2008, 81 min)
With English subtitles
Yodok is an infamous North Korean political concentration camp. Can the survivors tell their stories in a musical? Few escapees living in exile in South Korea give it a try.
North Korean leader Kim Il Sung ordered the seed of class enemies to be destroyed unto the third generation. Anyone in a family with a "criminal" is considered guilty by association. Entire families are sent to labor camps with life sentences, and without court hearings. Today, more than 200,000 are behind the wire, subject to the worst kinds of slave labor and torture. Yodok Stories follows 36-year-old North Korean defector Jung Sung San, who has managed to escape through China to South Korea. Jung organizes a controversial theatre play about his experiences as a prisoner in the Yodok concentration camp in North Korea. He inspires eight other refugees to recreate the past and, despite death threats and many obstacles, the musical becomes a tour de force for this ensemble of refugees, offering them a chance to talk about their experiences and inspire others to protest against the exist.