“A loyal retainer doesn’t serve two kings, and a faithful wife doesn’t serve two husbands.” In the beginning of Bound by Chastity Rule we see a dead man’s grandmother say these words to her widowed granddaughter-in-law. It’s an ideology that dominated traditional Korean society, and a long-established custom that the protagonists of this film couldn’t escape from. Directed by Shin Sang-ok, this 1962 film is an adaptation of Hwang Sun-won’s short story Widows. It comes after director Jo Keung-ha’s version, which was made in i960. Just like his previous film, Mother and a Guest, this film was shown in competition at the Asian Film Festival and the Berlin Film Festival, and it was both a commercial and critical success. A young widow who falls in love with a servant, but is unable to escape social taboo and conventions; bound by class and tradition, a man who can’t reach out to the woman she loves; and even though she herself lived all her life as a widow, a woman who demands chastity from her granddaughter-in-law. The characters in this film are all victims of society, bound by social constraints. More than any other Korean director, Shin Sang-ok dealt with the suffering of women and human desire, and this film is a good representation of his oeuvre. Unfortunately, the original film negatives have since been lost This is a digitally-restored version of a 16mm print that was found in Taiwan by the Korean Film Archive.
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(54999) Jeonju Cine Complex, 22, Jeonjugaeksa 3-gil, Wansan-gu, Jeonju-si, Jeollabuk-do, Republic of Korea
T. +82 (0)63 231 3377