"Pulgasari"

Watch a 45-second clip of the "Godzilla" rip-off that made Kim Jong Il proud.


Salon Staff
March 13, 2003 5:16AM (UTC)

Loosely based on a legend of the 14th century Koryo monarchy, "Pulgasari" is a fairly obvious "Godzilla" rip-off, made by Shin Sang-Ok for North Korea's film-loving Kim Jong Il, who sought to use film as a way to gain world support for his communist regime. Shin was able to recruit several Japanese special-effects experts to come work on "Pulgasari," including Kempachiro Satsuma, the second actor to wear the Godzilla suit.

This scene shows Pulgasari leading a people's revolt against the king's fortress -- and against thousands of North Korean military troops mobilized and dressed up as extras. Pulgasari ultimately turns on the people, which has led many observers to suggest that the monster is ultimately a metaphor for the repressive North Korean government.

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To view the clip, click here.
[© 1985 KOREA FILM EXPORT & IMPORT CORPORATION UNDER EXCLUSIVE LICENSE TO ADV FILMS.]

The film is available through ADV Films.

To read the story of Shin Sang-Ok's career as Kim's filmmaker, and his ultimate escape, click here.

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