Originally released in 1949, the classic A Hometown in Heart was one of the most important films made in Korea after its liberation from Japan. It was the first film from director Yoon Yong-kyu, who later made films in North Korea. Based on playwright Ham Se-deok’s A Little Monk, the film is set in a small temple in the mountains. Child monk Do-seong (Yu Min) lives a simple life of prayer and learning there with the head monk (Byeon Gi-jong). The boy develops a bond with a young widow (legendary actress Choi Eun-hie in an early role) who comes to pray at the temple. She hopes to take Do-seong as her son, but problems arise when his real mother (Kim Seon-yeong) appears… —yesasia.com
This quite delightful childhood tearjerker from Korea, the first film from that country I've seen, came as a very pleasant surprise as I knew little about it beforehand. The story is sentimental but not overtly so and tells the tale of a young boy abandoned to a Buddhist temple by his mother at the age of three and yearning for her to return. Beautifully directed and boasting gorgeous cinematography, I was entranced.