A Resistance (2019) - full transcript

Since the Japanese occupation, Koreans fought for independence at home and abroad. Started on March 1, 1919, the national protest held at least 2 months. It was called the-March 1st ...

Since the Japanese occupation,

Koreans fought for independence
at home and abroad.

Starting on March 1, 1919,

a national protest was
held for two months.

Though they were nonviolent,

7,500 were killed, and
47,000 were arrested.


Get off.

Take a picture of a ghost?

She's ghastly.


Prisoner 371.

On March 1, she...

No need. It's obvious.

Illegal protesting
and breach of peace?

Yes, sir.

Six months?

One year?

She received three years in the retrial.
Five years in the first trial, sir.

Contempt of court, too?

What did this young bitch do?

Defiant face unique to Koreans...

You went to high school.
You must know Japanese.

Listen carefully!

Stay quietly here.

Don't do anything but
breathe for three years.

If not, you won't make it out alive!


Nishida Jiro.

Yes, sir!

Why did you apply as an officer?

It's because I want to be
a true citizen of Japan, sir.


Is that all?

I also needed a good job, sir.

You speak Japanese well.

Where did you learn it?

While working at a rice
dealer shop in Incheon, sir.

Rice dealer?

Are you strong?

Yes, sir! I'll do anything, sir.


Prisoner 371. Enter.

I know that bitch.

She went to study in the capital
and came back on her high horse.

Mrs. Kim?

Right. I'm Man-seok's mom.

Since you stirred our town to
protest, the Japanese trampled it!

Your mother and father...

Even my son got stabbed to death!

My poor son.

Independence is not worth his life.

- Why did he go and protest?
- Please stop, ma'am.

I can't live without him.

No one forced us to protest.


I don't care about the protests.

All I did

was beg the Japanese
cops to bring back my son!

How in the world did I end up in here?

I'm stuck in prison
with a kisaeng like her.

Why me...

My poor, innocent boy...

Join us.

If you stand still, your
legs will swell and hurt.

Don't pity me.

Acting high and mighty here, too?


Remember me from school?

Are you hurt anywhere?

She did a hunger strike for a while.

You did?

No, I just fasted as I prayed.

But it just made me
weaker and didn't help.

So think of your
future and stay healthy.


Eat it.

Go on.

♪ Arirang ♪

♪ Arirang ♪

♪ Arariyo ♪

♪ Crossing ♪

♪ The Arirang hill ♪

♪ A rich harvest is coming ♪

♪ A rich harvest is coming ♪

♪ Throughout the country ♪

♪ A rich harvest is coming ♪

♪ Arirang, Arirang ♪

♪ Arariyo ♪

Be quiet.

We're much like frogs.

What do you mean?

She's right.

Like frogs that stop
when someone comes.

- I guess.
- That sounds right.






- I said, be quiet.
- Ribbit.




- Are you crazy? Stop that noise!
- Ribbit...

We are not frogs!

What did you say?

- We're not frogs.
- What?

Who was that?

No dinner for you tonight.

Damn fools.

- They give us less food by the day.
- Seriously.

♪ Arirang ♪

♪ Arirang ♪

♪ Arariyo ♪

♪ Crossing over ♪

♪ The Arirang hill ♪

♪ A rich harvest... ♪

Wait. Stop, please.

♪ A rich harvest ♪

♪ Is coming ♪

♪ Arirang, Arirang ♪

♪ Arariyo ♪

♪ Crossing over... ♪


♪ Until the East Sea runs dry ♪

♪ And Mt. Baekdu is worn away... ♪

It started in this cell.

Does this happen often?

They usually stop when I tell them to.

But not today?

♪ Beautiful flowers ♪

♪ And splendid mountains ♪

♪ Let Koreans preserve ♪

♪ Their country forever... ♪


Round and round?

They sing their old anthem
and march in circles?

When I told them to stop,
someone said they're not frogs.


There were too many to tell, sir.


It was said in Japanese?

Yes, sir. It was perfectly pronounced.

Nishida, was it?

Yes, sir.

This is your first task.

Find the female prisoner
who speaks Japanese well.

It's for jobs like this

that we employed a Korean.

♪ Life ♪

♪ Goes by ♪

♪ Like flowing water ♪

♪ Aging ♪

♪ Is like the blowing wind... ♪

A kisaeng knows how to play, huh?

Though she's starving, she can sing?

♪ No use boasting ♪

♪ Of younger days... ♪

Everyone out.

Drag them out.

Get out!

Prisoners, sit down!

You understand Japanese well.

You must speak it, too.


say you're not a frog.

We're not frogs.

Though Koreans can speak
Japanese, we choose to use Korean.

How dare you!


You're the one.

You led the chant.

We're not frogs.

We're not frogs.

We're not frogs.

We're not frogs.

We're not frogs!

Stop it!

We're not frogs!

- We're not frogs!
- Stop it!

We're not frogs!


We're not frogs!

We're not frogs.

- We're not frogs.
- Stop!

- We're not frogs.
- We're not frogs!

- We're not frogs!
- Stop!

- We're not frogs!
- We're not frogs!

- We're not frogs!
- Stop!

We're not frogs!


Yes, sir!

Do you know why Korea perished?

I learned it's due to
laziness and division, sir.

Right, division.

Koreans are awfully selfish people
who only think of their own gains.

They slander and fight each
other and eventually fall to pieces.

But prisoners who fight over food...

have banded together?

It makes no sense.

I agree it's wrong, sir.

Is that so?

Even dogs attack their
masters when they are starving.


when the time comes,
beat the first to bite.

Are you okay?

I just pretended it hurt.

Back then...

Thank you, ma'am.

Please. Let's be friends.

How could I?

I'm a commoner who serves tea.

That's more absurd.

We protested to erase
discrimination like that.

I wish for a dream world
like that, but it's far from now.

You're a student, all right.

I know you well.

My customers spoke of kisaengs a lot.

To have a drink with
Kim Hyang-hwa in Suwon,

it'll be hard unless
you're a wealthy landlord.

They're all just rumors.

Whether they were white or married,

I poured drinks to
anyone who liked me.

Except one.


You know.


Damn girls. You think
this is a playground?

Go to sleep!

If I were a man, I would've
had a drink with you.

Sounds nice.

If I were a man, I'd go
to Manchuria and Russia.

I'll fly around the world.

A woman can do it, too.

Our loving God, we thank you.

Even as our country has been stolen,

we thank you that our family
can gather and eat together.

With this food, we will be strong
and strive through the tough times.

We know there are many who are hungry.

Help us not to be arrogant

but work so we can all
eat well in faith and love of...

Why you...

You're such a coward.

There's rice on your
spoon. You ate during prayer.

Stop acting like little children.

We thank you for the
food and our health.

In Jesus' name, we pray.


You should've been switched.

Let's eat.


If he were a girl, I'd be exhausted.

I'd have to punish
everyone bothering...

What brings you here?

Well, it's for administrative control.


you can't barge into my
house without prior notice!

Even dogs aren't bothered when eating.

Are you slighting us?

What did he say?

- Have you eaten?
- Don't mind it.

If not, join us.

We all have to eat.

Why are you doing this?

You're under scrutiny.

- Start searching the house!
- Yes, sir!

You've been here enough this month!

Search every corner!

How dare you!


It was a lovely morning.

His Japanese sucks.

Worse than kids.

I was starving.

Eat it all.

You on the floor.

Come out.

You'll get health checks.

Let's go.

She said it's a health check.

Does this happen often?

No, it's the first time.

I never heard of a doctor here.

Go in first.

What health check?
We just got rotten apples.

Prisoner 371.

Come out.

- What's wrong?
- Come on!


No! Gwan-sun!

What happened out there?

They asked us to tell them
if we had any problems.

So I said, "Give us more
space to sleep and more food."

That's it?

What else?

They asked who
mentioned the frogs first.


You're doubting me?

I lived in the same town
as her since she was young!

You squealed on her, didn't you?

I heard you threw a
chair in your retrial.

Will you throw that, too?

Chairs are meant to sit on.

Sit down.

Why won't Koreans ever listen?

- Nishida.
- Yes, sir!

What do we do to a prisoner

who disobeys orders?

Don't hesitate!

You think you're so good?

Better than you who is
a dog to the Japanese.


What did she just say?

She said what she did was good, sir.

Then I'll let you do what
you fools are good at.

Bind her.

That's the "hurrah" you
fools love to do, right?

Now, say "hurrah."

You wretched thieves!

You think your world will last long?


You will suffer damnation!

Mark my words!

What a bitch.


After being seen naked by strangers,

I heard Korean women commit suicide.

Nishida. Watch and learn.

Dear God...

Throw her in the wall.

She'll wish she was here.

Yes, sir!

Hello? I'm Cho Sang-pil from Gaesung.

Who are you?


I'm Yu Gwan-sun from Byeongcheon.

You're a woman.

Byeongcheon, you say?

Do you know Yu Woo-seok?

You know my brother, sir?

I do.

We were in the same cell.

He was here?

I thought he was at Gongju Prison.

Woo-seok cried often.

He felt terrible that his
younger sister got three years

and he got only half that.

Is my brother well?

I don't know since I moved here.

And you?

I'm fine, sir.

If you meet him, please say...

that I got punished just for singing.

I followed along to
the women's singing.

I thought

there are gaps even within
these dark, thick walls,

and there is light...

coming through the gaps.

Who's drawing instead
of praying at church?

What about you?

Why wander around instead of studying?

You never lose.

We can make thousands with this.

Why didn't I think of this?

They say if you have a
bad brain, your body suffers.

That means he's naked and
suffering because he's dull-witted?

You may have a bad brain,

but he showed that
you can't be bad at heart.

But how can you say
that Jesus is naked?

You are a lady.


he's cold and bare like that

because it will touch people
more than if he wore clothes?

With such doubts,
you won't go to heaven.

Doubt is not the opposite of faith.

And I still have more
interest in people than God.

It's only been two days in there.


Come out.

Take him away.

Do you think you can last?

If you ask to be let out, you can be.


you must say it in Japanese.


It's hard to last three
days, but it's been a week?

Your legs will start to rot.

APRIL 1, 1919,


Long live Korean independence!


Long live Korean independence!




Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!




Long live Korean independence!




It's dangerous!




Kill them all!

Dear! No!

- Father!
- Dear!

- Father!
- Dear!

Dear, wake up!




Two can come out.

If you rebel, this is what happens.

Poor Gwan-sun.

Oh, no.

You don't deserve to cry.

This is all your fault!


It was the Japanese, not her.

Gwan-sun... Please.

I deserve to die.

- They said I could keep my baby...
- What?

How can you raise a baby in here?

They said babies born
in here are tossed out...

Her eyes are moving.



- Gwan-sun.
- My God...

He wet his diaper.

Change it.

It hasn't dried yet.

Thank you.

You inspire me to take heart.


I can barely take care of myself.

I can't imagine doing
what you're doing.

I couldn't imagine it
either before giving birth.

How can you have such a pretty baby?

You'll have one later, too.

Thank you, too.

You must be cold. Come here.

Sweet baby.

Spring is coming.

You know she's the
most defiant of them all.

This time, she made a humble
request in Japanese to the guard, sir.


What did she request?

I feel guilty eating free
food when I'm a sinner.

Only model prisoners
are allowed to do labor.

If she works hard and
becomes a model prisoner,

it'll set an example.

Can you be sure of that?

Yes, sir.

What's the hardest labor here?

Get up!

Get back to work! Stupid bitch!

You're not well. Why work there?

I just want to know
what it's like outside.

You're not planning
something, are you?

That day is coming up.

But I don't know today's date...

If you find out? Then what?

Gwan-sun, it's too dangerous in here.

The only thing we can
do in here is just pray.


It says in the Bible, "Faith
without works is dead."


It's not the right time.

Let's do it when we become free.

But if it's an earnest wish,

shouldn't we try everything we can?

What would Jesus do now?

♪ Bird ♪

♪ Bird ♪

♪ Blue bird ♪

♪ Don't sit ♪

♪ On the mung bean field ♪

Excuse me. Wait!

I'm looking for Yu Woo-seok
from Byeongcheon.

Careful. All your fingernails
can fall out soon.

The lye water is so damn strong!


If you're done eating,
stop yapping and work!

And you!

Number 371, how is the work?

In here,

the important thing is surviving.


Then what's important to you?

Without freedom,

why is it so important to live?


What's that? Tell me.

Spending my one life on what I want.

Then I have freedom.

- I'm doing what I want.
- No.

You only do what the Japanese
say. That's called slavery.


Why you!

Remember, you're
out here thanks to me.

What's the date today?

Why do you want to know?

I can bear anything in
here except one thing.

I can't pass my parents'
death anniversary

because only beasts would do that.


that's the reason you
wanted to work out here?

When did they die?

They both died on April 1.

Don't worry. That's far off.


So, how many days are left?

Just tell me what day it is today?

Please, sir.


It looks like rain!

Work faster!

Hurry up!

Take them inside!


Hurry up!

I found him.

Is he well?

How could he be well in here?

Please wait.

How are things in the male prison?

About what?

What do you wish to know?

Last year... The
anniversary is coming up.

I didn't come in here
for shouting "hurrah",

but who'd think about that
while struggling in here?

It's all in the past.

It's raining! Hurry!

Stupid fools!

Hurry up!

What's wrong? Did you
hear some bad news?

Tell us what's wrong.

If you didn't shout
"hurrah" in protest,

you wouldn't be here.

Have you ever regretted it?

Of course I have.

But if I could go back,
I'd still do it again.


After seeing my dear friend's arm

get cut off by Japanese soldiers,

I had to do something!

No matter how hard it is here,

I can't forget her arm being
cut as she held on to our flag.

I have to be strong.

Do you regret it, Gwan-sun?

Didn't we shout "hurrah"
knowing this will happen?

I just thought it was a duty.

A duty to take back our country.

To me, it's not about
our country or a duty.

Even when it was our country,
life was still difficult for us.

So even if the Japs rule...

I thought things would be
the same for us kisaengs.

It's just going from
rich men to Japanese.


we were at least treated as humans.

But the Japanese bastards...

They used us as sex toys.

No, we were no different than toilets.

I shouted for independence
not caring if I died.

Rather than live in hell, it'd
be better to commit suicide.

I think...

I just spoke of ideals
and acted high and mighty.

Like Man-seok's mother said,

if I didn't go back to tell my
village about the protests,

my parents and 15 of my village people

would still be alive.

If I do what is right, I
thought God would help me.

Compared to you, I don't
deserve to shout for independence.

Just like everyone
in here is different,

we have different
reasons for protesting.

Your parents had theirs, too.

It was their choice.

If it's not a leap month,
we have three days left.

22, 23, 24, 25.

MARCH 1, 1920

What's wrong?

Oh, no! Are you okay?

What is it?

Pull her out!

Take her to her cell.

Weak bitch.

It's not easy to become
a model prisoner.

What happened? Gwan-sun!

- Gwan-sun.
- What's wrong?

What happened? She's unconscious?

- Gwan-sun.
- Gwan-sun!

Open your eyes!

I can't just do laundry
on the first anniversary.

So? What will you do?

I don't want to regret not
doing something today.

I want to say that I tried.


God may not erase our trials,

but He'll give us strength to endure.

You're all free to join me or not.

We declare...

Korea is an independent country

and Koreans are self-governing people.

We believe in the
equality of humankind.

This we proclaim to our descendants

so that they may enjoy
posterity as their inherent right.

Until the last person,

until the last moment,

let all things be done
decently and in order,

so that our behavior may
be honorable and upright.

Anytime, anywhere...

proudly shout!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!


Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

- Hurrah!
- Long live Korean independence.

- Hurrah!
- Hurrah!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence!

Hurrah! Hurrah!

Hurrah! Hurrah!


Let's go! Hurry!

Long live Korean independence!

They're protesting at the prison!
They're shouting "hurrah" at the prison!

They're protesting in prison!

- They're protesting in prison!
- Really?

Stop drinking! Let's go!

- Hurrah!
- Hurrah!

Hurrah! Hurrah!

Long live Korean independence!


Long live Korean independence!

Hurrah! Hurrah!

Not again!

Damn it.

The nearby area is sheer chaos.

Streetcars are shut down.

Mounted police are here.

The nightmare of last year is back!

It started because someone said

they heard "hurrah"
coming from prison!

That means, it started here.

Our prison is blamed for this!


What were you doing!

Compared to 3,000 prisoners,
we're outnumbered...

So, Chief Guard?

You came to make excuses?

Plan to stop this!


It's no different from a riot.

If we find and execute the leaders,

it'll calm down, sir.

That's easy to say.

But they're all shouting!

How will we find out who started this!

Why not say just kill them all?

Damn it. What do we do?

- Sir?
- What is it?

I've received a report.

We know where this started.


Do you hear people shout "hurrah"?

Try it. Say, "hurrah!"

Make him fight for independence
so he can come back here?

I saw you shouting
for independence, too.

I did it to relieve stress.

Shouting "hurrah" feels good.



Long live Korean independence!

Long live Korean independence! Hurrah!


Long live Korean independence!


Open it.


You've been working hard
to become a model prisoner?

Then why are you here
instead of doing laundry?




How dare you measly
women care about politics?

Women like you
raised kids into dimwits

who ruined your country.

You should be ashamed

to shout "hurrah"!

You should be ashamed, not us!

That's right!

Long live Korean Independence!

Long live Korean Independence! Hurrah!

Damn bitches have strength to shout?

Cut their rations in half!


Long live Korean Independence!

Long live Korean Independence!

Who did you plot it with?

No one.

Then who ordered you to do it?

Someone did make me do it.

There is someone, sir.

Who is it?

You Japanese fools.

Japanese fools?

We protest because of you.

Don't you know by now?

She protests because...


- Bind her.
- Yes, sir!

I'll ask one last time.

Do you regret starting
the shouting protests?

You're the ones who'll regret.

Japan will be ruined.

You won't give up?

Pull it.

"To commemorate

the royal wedding

of Prince Lee

and Queen Nashimoto Masako,

special pardons are given

to reduce...

all prison sentences in half.

From Governor General Saito Makoto."

Congratulations, sir.

That solves overpopulation here, sir.

I think...

it can solve another
headache for us, sir.

What do you mean?

Tell them about the special
pardons, but add a condition, sir.

For national unity,

the governor general
will give special pardons

of reducing all sentences in half.

What are they saying?

Our sentences will be cut in half.

What? I already did the time.
Does that mean I can leave?


However, protestors for
independence will be excluded!

What now?

Anyone who shouts for independence
will not get the special pardon.

They're trying to stop
us from protesting.

Then I won't protest.

What about Gwan-sun?

She got three years.
She can't leave with us.

Even if it's reduced,
she has six months left.

Six more months?

- They're conniving.
- But we can get out!

I want to leave!

Mr. Cho!

I was released
thanks to your protests.

Are you all right?


But I heard about your
sister on the way here.

My sister Gwan-sun?

What is it?

She was taken to underground solitary.


Prisoner 367.

That's you.

Sign here.



Go one by one!


Line up!

Go one by one!

I've never seen you smile before.

A senior told me earlier

there is a provisional
government in Shanghai.


What's that?

It's where our own
government is being prepared.

He survived in
here, so he'll live well.

Have a long life with your mama.

He's the dad?


Go on.

- Have a good life.
- I will.

Excuse me.

Do you know Gwan-sun?

You're just as she described you.

I see.

How is my sister?

I'll tell you outside.

Get in line!

I have good news for you.

Thanks to the mercy of the Emperor,

sentences have been reduced.

Your sentence will be reduced in half.

Do you understand?

I said I'm not a prisoner
since I came here.

So your talk of mercy
and reducing sentences...

It has nothing to do with me.

She said she isn't a prisoner,
so she doesn't care, sir.

I hate that you people had
your sentences reduced, too.

Especially defiant fools like you.

I can't sleep thinking you'll go out

and protest again!

And bitches like you
must not have children!

You'll give birth to more
rebellious fools like you!

Clean up.

Didn't you hear me?

Jeong Chun-young!

Clean up the floor!

Yes, sir.

Damn Korean.

Stupid bitch.

You want to die that badly?

Couldn't you stay low for a second?



Wash the floor now!

For three months,

she had 12 requests for visits.

However, 371 refuses
to be called a prisoner, sir.

In that case, her visits
should not be allowed, sir.

On what grounds?

She doesn't accept her sentencing.

She shouldn't be given rights, sir.


What you say

is contrary to our policy to
develop into the same civilization

as the West.

You don't want the protests
to start again, do you?

No, sir.


Do you recognize us?

You've become more handsome.

And you're even prettier, Hyang-hwa.

The dress suits you.

You'll be out soon, right?

It must be pretty outside in the fall.

I have so much to do when I go out.

I want to greet our
parents at their graves.

And I want to cook a
meal for you, Woo-seok.

I want to have a drink
with you, Hyang-hwa.

Of course.

Do everything you want.

What's with your leg?

My pelvis hurts from sitting too long.

It's true.

I'm not well.

Damn bastards.


Can you please come out alive?

I want to protest with
you one more time.

It's a pity that I can't...

I'm so sorry.

For what?

For everything.


I'm not scared at all.

So please don't be scared.

I'm sorry.

I didn't mean to cry.

It's okay.

I planned many things,
but there's nothing I can do.

May I ask what you plan to do now?

I'm going to Manchuria.

I'm not going to lose either.

Who are you?

Wait! Stop!

Don't kill me.

I'm Korean. My name
is Jeong Chun-young.

Don't kill me.

A Korean?

Then you tortured your own people?

No! I just translated for them.

I have to provide for
my parents and sister.

Please! Please don't kill me!

Why must you do this?

Then who will?

Yu Gwan-sun died on September
28, 1920, two days before her release.

Her body was taken
to be secretly cremated

but was stopped upon
request by Ewha School.

Her body was buried in Itaewon
Cemetery but later lost in 1939

when the cemetery was made
into an airfield by the Japanese.

Jeong Chun-young was arrested in 1949

by the Investigative Committee
of Antinational Activities.

However, he was released without penalty

when the committee was dispersed
under Rhee Syng-man's administration.