The Global Search for Education: Summer Days Director Isue Shin on Discovering Who You Are.
This month, audiences can screen Summer Days on the Planet Classroom Network. This film was curated by Planet Classroom.
From Director Isue Shin, Summer Days is a poignant coming of age short film. It’s the story of Jina, a high school student who is spending the summer at her grandmother’s house. Bored and purposeless, Jina tries to connect with her Grandma by teaching her to speak English. Additionally, she begins a relationship with a local boy. Shin explores the teen’s feelings of wanting to move forward romantically but not really knowing how. In the process, Jina discovers a new meaning in life.
The Global Search for Education is pleased to welcome Isue Shin.
Summer Days exists in a liminal space, allowing room for emotion to develop at the threshold of consciousness. Was this subdued delivery intended? Or did it occur naturally as a result of the reflective nature of the film?
I wanted to paint a painting rather than take a photograph. The film should feel like a memory, with parts that are not completely colored in.
This film feels very personal and revealing. To what degree does it mirror personal revelations, either to you or someone else?
Even though the dialogue or events of the story aren’t composed of experiences that I personally have had, I did shoot the film in my grandmother’s apartment in Seoul, so there is a personal connection there. I also wanted to express a general feeling of in-betweenness I felt during summers, which I would often spend in Korea, completely separate from my school life in the US. Summer break was an opportunity to grow independently, and I wanted to focus on that very specific time period.
What do you feel is the next logical step for the main character? Act on these emotions or simply allow them to transpire and reflect?
I don’t think Jina is necessarily going to act on her emotions. If anything, she steps away from the things that happen to her. I think she will continue to grow and reflect on a summer that may have left a stronger effect on her than she might’ve imagined.
Should we latch onto fleeting thoughts or allow them to pass?
I think it’s important to inspect thoughts, even fleeting ones. Jina is in the process of exploring her own mind and getting to know herself. She might let these thoughts pass, but they might find their way to her again.
Thank you Isue!
C.M. Rubin and Isue Shin
Don’t Miss Summer Days, now screening on the Planet Classroom Network. This film was curated by Planet Classroom.