FILM REVIEW: Poetry

LEE Chang-dong’s haunting portrait of city life won two accolades at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival, including the coveted Ecumenical Jury Prize.

The film centres on grandmother Mija (Yun Jung-hee), who learns from her doctor that she is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s.

Unwavered by the diagnosis, Mija returns home to take care of her truculent grandson, Jongwook (Lee Da-wit), who never shows her any respect, and she continues her part-time work as a carer for an old man who has been paralysed by a stroke.

A shocking discovery about Jongwook and his friends heaps shame on Mija and she must raise a large sum of money to keep the matter private.

She finds an outlet for her sadness in an adult poetry class at her local community centre, putting all of her emotions into words before the Alzheimer’s robs her of her creativity.

Released: July 29 (UK, selected cinemas) (12A, 139 mins)