50000 Films Found?
Sat Feb 12 18:00:08 EST 2005
It's interesting how these stories start spreading on the internet.
Just the morning I did a search on Abe's name and only got a couple
hits, and now in the evening there are many more. I even found an
anti-Korean right wing 2-channel site in which some members call for
the burning of Arirang, or who say that the existence of
Arirang--produced under Japanese colonial rule--shows how Japanese rule
allowed even greater freedoms to Koreans than either South or North
Korean today. (Remember these sites when talking about the "kanryu"
As I said, I did find one piece this morning that mentions Abe being
involved in explosives research during the war (this is an article from
before Abe's death). But now news (rumors?) seems to be spreading about
how Abe might have gotten all these films. While some say Abe's father
was a film fan, and even financially aided Korean filmmakers before the
war, others say that the Abe family was involved in experiments in
turning film stock into explosives in the desperate days near the end
of the war. Again, I wonder about the veracity of these reports, but
one does wonder how many films were lost (or perhaps, if Abe did save
these, saved) by wartime efforts to obtain the explosive materials in
nitrate film stock.
Film Studies Program/East Asian Languages and Literatures
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