Comrade Kim Goes Flying (2012) MIFF Film Review


North Korea 81 mins

Comrade Kim Goes Flying follows a young, female coal miner who has always wanted to fly. Moving to the big city for a year working construction, Kim auditions for the circus, but her fear of heights and lack of training let her down. A few short words from one of the performers sets them at odds, both as individuals and as whole classes of people (elite performers vs the working class). A chain reaction is set where Kim must prevail for herself and the working class.

It feels like a pretty stock standard propaganda film, but apparently it is somewhat different to others in that it is about a woman with a dream. However, her individual dream is not as important as that of the people. I found this to be a really fun film with such a compelling main character – Han Jong-sim has a smile that totally lights up the world, even when undertaking hard labour.

Comrade Kim Goes Flying screens at ACMI on Thursday, August 8 at 9pm and at Greater Union on Friday, August 9 at 6:30pm. To book tickets, visit

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