Crossing the Line (2006 film)
||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (April 2013)|
|Crossing the Line|
|Directed by||Daniel Gordon
|Produced by||Daniel Gordon|
|Written by||Daniel Gordon|
|Music by||Heather Fenoughty|
|Editing by||Peter Haddon|
|Running time||96 minutes|
|Box office||$9,258 (USA)|
The film is about a former U.S. Army soldier, James J. Dresnok, who defected to North Korea on August 15, 1962. It was directed and produced by British filmmakers Daniel Gordon and Nicholas Bonner, and was shown at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. Crossing the Line, which was narrated by actor Christian Slater, was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the festival.
It was first screened in 2007 on the BBC. The film centred around Dresnok's history, highlighting his unhappiness in America, and particularly his desertion from the United States Army in 1962 to the DPRK. It also showed Dresnok in the present day in Pyongyang (where he now lives), interacting with his North Korean family and friends. Dresnok spoke exclusively to the filmmakers about his childhood, his desertion, his life in a country completely foreign and quite hostile to his own, his fellow defectors, and his wife and children.
Dresnok is also shown with fellow defectors, including Charles Robert Jenkins, who returned to Japan to be with his wife, Hitomi Soga (a victim of kidnap by the North Koreans), while filming was taking place. Dresnok felt hurt by Jenkins' allegations of physical abuse by Dresnok and the North Korean regime and angrily denied them. Towards the end of Crossing the Line, a North Korean doctor discloses to the BBC that Dresnok is in failing health, mainly due to heavy drinking and smoking.
- 'Crossing' Reveals Untold N. Korea Story, The Korea Times, August 23, 2007
- Last US defector in North Korea, BBC, 23 January 2007
- Robert Willoughby The Bradt Travel Guide: North Korea 2008- Page 39 "In a a further twist, they found film fame with roles in DPRK films vilifying the US, with Dresnok typecast as an evil American and making firm friends with several North Korean film stars who appear in Crossing the Line and discussed the ..."
- Justin Corfield Historical Dictionary of Pyongyang 2013 - Page 43 "After Doina died of lung cancer, Dresnok married the daughter of a Togolese diplomat and a North Korean woman, and had a son. Teaching English at Pyongyang University of Foreign Studies, he was the subject of the film Crossing the Line ..."
- The New York Times, August 10, 2007
- The Los Angeles Times, October 12, 2007
- Slant Magazine
- Rotten Tomatoes