Buddhist Movie Night at PIMC: "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter . . . and Spring" (Sat., 8/17/19, 6:30pm)

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Please join us for another edition of Buddhist Movie Night at Portland Insight Meditation Community (PIMC). We'll be watching "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter . . . and Spring" on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019.  The screening will begin at 6:30pm.

This is a chance to come together as a community, enjoy Buddhist/mindfulness-themed cinema, and discuss how the material relates to our understanding of the Buddha and the Dharma.

Mikki and Alezah will be hosting the movie night and leading the discussion afterward. It will be a very mellow, low key affair. Please come, bring a snack to share if you like, and enjoy.

DATE/TIME: Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019  /  6:30-9:00PM

LOCATION: PIMC, 6536 SE Duke St., Portland

SUGGESTED DONATION: $5/person (no one turned away for insufficient funds).


Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring (also known as Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter... and Spring) is a 2003 South Korean film directed by Kim Ki-duk about a Buddhist monastery that floats on a lake in a pristine forest. The story is about the life of a Buddhist monk as he passes through the seasons of his life, from childhood to old age.

The film stars Su Oh-yeong, Kim Young-min, Seo Jae-kyung and Kim Jong-ho. The director himself appears as the man in the last stage of life. The film was released in the United States in 2004 by Sony Pictures Classics, in subtitle format.

The film is divided into five segments (the titular seasons), each segment depicting a stage in the life of a novice Buddhist monk and his older teacher. The segments are roughly ten to twenty years apart, and the action of each takes place during the season of its title. The story unfolds rather simply, but the implications of the characters' actions are silently commented upon by the presence of Buddhist symbols and iconography.

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring was acclaimed by film critics, holding a 95% "Fresh" rating on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes and an 85 out of 100 on Metacritic. Peter Rainer of New York praised the film's "tranquil beauty" and argued, "Kim exalts nature--life’s passage--without stooping to sentimentality. He sees the tooth and claw, and he sees the transcendence. Whether this is a Buddhist attribute, I cannot say, but the impression this movie leaves is profound: Here is an artist who sees things whole." James Berardinelli wrote that the film's pace "is deliberate, but there is too much richness in the movie's emotional tapestry for it to be considered dull or drawn-out. [...] The film raises questions about how we live our lives and how actions, like ripples in the waters of time, can have unexpected consequences years later." Berardinelli also stated that the "perfectly composed shots [amplified] an emotionally resonant story."

Roger Ebert included the film in his Great Movies list in 2009, writing, "The film it its beauty and serenity becomes seductive and fascinating. [...] There is little or no dialogue, no explanations, no speeches with messages. [Ki-duk] descends upon lives that have long since taken their form. If conflict comes, his characters will in some way bring it upon themselves, or within themselves. That causes us to pay closer attention."

In a 2016 international critics' poll conducted by BBC, Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring was voted one of the 100 greatest motion pictures since 2000.


Also be sure to join us for our other monthly Buddhist movie nights. Here's the schedule for 2019 (scheduled for the 3rd Saturday of the month):

Sept. 21:  American Beauty (1999 directed by: Sam Mendes)
Oct. 19:    Kung Fu Panda (2008 directed by: Mark Osborne & John Stevenson)
Nov. 16:   A Man Escaped (1956 directed by Robert Bresson)
Dec. 21:   Late Spring (1949 directed by: Yasujiro Ozu)