Following her husband's death, Shin-ae and her son move to the late husband’s hometown. Helping her out is Jong-chan, a good-intentioned but bothersome car mechanic. Her fate again takes a vicious turn when she loses her son. As her search for comfort in Christianity comes with no result, she wages a war against God.
Lee Chang-dong questions the god’s love and the human’s weakness, the savior and the forgiveness through Shin-ae’s pain and suffering. He also provokes our lax morality through the extremity of her powerlessness, blind will, and raging emotions. Being provocative to the God where the sinned can easily hide, it only reveals Shin-ae’s vulnerability in her existence with life’s mystery and her weak belief. In Secret Sunshine, Lee’s film world confronts the uncomfortable reality where a woman’s unbearable days, a cliquish small town, sympathy, and consumption toward others’ loss are all blended. Whether the secret sunshine will reach Shin-ae or her life will pick up the thousands of broken pieces to allow the light to shine over her, the director has not concluded. His reserved view touches our hearts. [PARK Inho]
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