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Working miracles with only a single set and a handful of characters, Korean director Kim Ki-Duk creates a wise little gem of a movie. As the title suggests, the action takes place in five distinct episodes, but sometimes many years separate the seasons. The setting is a floating monastery in a pristine mountain lake, where an elderly monk teaches a boy the lessons of life--although when the boy grows to manhood, he inevitably must learn a few hard lessons for himself. By the time the story reaches its final sections, you realize you have witnessed the arc of existence--not one person's life, but everyone's. It's as enchanting as a Buddhist fable, but it's not precious; Kim (maker of the notoriousThe Isle) consistently surprises you with a sex scene or an explosion of black comedy; he also vividly acts in the Winter segment, when the lake around the monastery eerily freezes.--Robert Horton
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CastKi-duk Kim, Yeong-su Oh, Jong-ho Kim, Young-min Kim, Jae-kyeong Seo
DirectorKi-duk Kim
Genre:  Foreign
Screen WriterKi-duk Kim
DVD Release Date:  September 7, 2004
Runtime:  103 minutes
Studio:  Sony Pictures
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2 Ratings: +2.5
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More Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter..... reviews
review by . September 22, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Everything about Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring is incredibly simple, so simple that it is borderline boring. The film about a young monk who is the understudy of a wise old monk. He starts out as just a boy but grows up with the seasons. They live on and take care of a floating monastery on a lake in the middle of a forest.     The young monk must experience life by himself for many years. As a young teen he is introduced to a young girl who's mother brought her to the …
review by . October 13, 2006
The movie is very slow and very deliberate. The team of cinematographer, Dong-hyeon Baek, and director, Ki-duk Kim, use stunning imagery to tell their version of the circle of life.     The strength of the movie lies in its ability to tell a tale with imagery instead of dialog. If you're one to get antsy in a Kubrick film due to his long drawn out shots, you likely will hate this movie. However, if you have patience and appreciate a director who doesn't seem to think the movie …
review by . July 12, 2005
In an age of computer enhanced, if not entirely generated, special effects, high adventure, action upon action scenes, what an enjoyable respite it is to view this Korean film of aesthetic simplicity.     Korean director Kim Ki-Duk has created a film centered around the seasons of a man's life beautifully framed against the seasons of nature. An elder Buddhist monk raises a younger monk with a quiet and unobtrusive wisdom. The scene is set in a small floating monastery where …
review by . October 18, 2004
When I saw the preview for this, I knew I had to rent it. During those first few glances I felt like maybe this movie could be a contender with Vertical Ray of the Sun for one of my all-time favorite movies, visually, cinematographically. Well, it turns out that's not the case, but it's still a good movie. In fact I don't put this near the level of Vertical Ray in any way, from performances to music to "the look" of it, etc...    As for the meat of the movie itself and the characters, …
review by . September 23, 2004
SPRING, SUMMER, AUTUMN, WINTER..AND SPRING is one of the most visually beautiful films created. With minimalist means, sets, effects, and dialogue, Director Ki-duk Kim leads us on a journey of the human condition, of the cycle of life using the metaphor of the seasons, and of the struggle for spiritual awakening that must come from within. Set on a floating Buddhist monastery in the middle of a lake surrounded by mountains and mists, an old monk (Yeong-su Oh) is first seen in Spring, observing his …
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