Castaway on the Moon

Castaway on the Moon ★★★★★

Castaway on the Moon instantly became one of my all time favorite films when I watched it last year. Since then, I've probably watched it at least once per month, and it never gets old! It's a beautifully told farce containing two of the most entertaining and quirky characters I've witnessed in South Korean cinema (that's really saying something, right?)

Seung-geun gets stranded on a small island on the Han river after an unsuccessful suicide attempt and has no means to get off the island. After weighing his options, he decides to make the best of his situation as a castaway and does his best to build a new life for himself. The other part of the story deals with the agoraphobic Jung-yeon who hasn't left her room in years. She is a slave to her routines and fears change as much as she fears the world outside of her room. When she opens her window during one of the two days Seoul is completely deserted, she stumbles upon the message Seung-geun wrote in the sand: HELLO. She is instantly intrigued and is sucked into this strange little man's world, convinced he is a stranded alien from the moon.

The relationship they form through long forgotten forms of communication is silly and ridiculous, but it's purposeful. All of the things that could feel cheesy and idiotic end up extremely poignant and sincere. My favorite part of the film is too good to spoil in a review, but here's a hint: black bean noodles. What begins as a sorrowful tale of a man succumbing to his despair turns into an impassioned argument for going outside of one's comfort zone and the healing power of new friendships. I highly recommend this film, despite that atrocious poster Letterboxd refuses to change. EDIT: the new poster is MUCH better :)

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