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66
14 reviews

They were the Brangelina of '70s South Korea-the romance between the debonair film director Shin Sang Ok and glamorous actress Choi Eun Hee took them to the heights of South Korean society. Fame took a toll on their love, but it also attracted unbelievable twists of fate. The two find themselves kidnapped by the North Korean regime, and they are forced to play along with a bizarre filmmaking project led by superfan cinephile Kim Jong Il. Enduring torture, imprisonment, and surveillance, their romance is rekindled, and they realize escape is only possible through filmmaking-but the smallest mistake in their plans could cost them their lives.

66

What does the critics say?

Based on 14 The Lovers and the Despot reviews, The Lovers and the Despot gets an average review score of 66.
80/100
www.thewrap.comCinema
In this stranger-than-fiction doc, film legends Shin Sang-ok and Choi Eun-hee were held prisoner and forced to make films — then they made a break for it.
216d ago
80/100
variety.comCinema
A coolly gripping account of one of the most bizarre true-crime stories ever to emerge from the film world.
216d ago
80/100
www.hollywoodreporter.comCinema
An alluring and informative documentary providing a wonderfully illustrated glimpse into territory, and a personal story, hitherto less known.
216d ago
75/100
www.washingtonpost.comCinema
“Lovers” suggests that any film — even this one — can have the manipulative power of propaganda.
216d ago
70/100
www.nytimes.comCinema
Despite its flaws and will to kitsch, The Lovers and the Despot has enough enigmas and chills to merit a look, even if some of its spookier moments involve cinephilia rather tha...
216d ago
70/100
www.villagevoice.comCinema
The Lovers and the Despot never finds time to examine at length the most fascinating of questions: What movies did a mind like Kim Jong-il's dream of? And within those dictates,...
216d ago
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The Lovers and the Despot release date for Cinema September 23, 2016 8 Months Ago (US)
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