• Genre: Drama

  • Director: Chang dong-Lee

  • Stars: Jeong-hie Yu, Da-Wit Lee, Hira Kim

  • Rate: *** 1/2

In South Korean director Chang-Dong Lee’s well-observed drama, a lovely grandmother just wants peace to write poetry, her new passion, but the world won’t let her.

Mija, superbly played by Yun Jung-hee, is raising her surly, ungrateful grandson, Wook (Da-wit Lee). To supplement her pension, Mija cleans house for, and bathes, a wealthy elderly man. Despite being partially paralyzed, he shocks the prudish Mija by making advances to her.

But Mija’s discomfiture is nothing compared to the jolts that are coming: the tragedy of a young girl’s death spins into her world, while darkness gathers on another front: a doctor tells Mija that her chronic forgetfulness is early Alzheimer’s, a disease that will eventually take her mind away. Poetry achieves lyricism in the way it depicts the uncommonly beautiful Mija’s misery, and was rightly honoured with the screenplay prize at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

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