May 18 (film)

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May 18
May 18 (film).jpg
Theatrical poster
Revised Romanization Hwaryeohan hyuga
McCune–Reischauer Hwaryŏhan hyuga
Directed by Kim Ji-hoon
Produced by Yoo In-taek
Park Chang-hyeon
Lee Su-nam
Written by Na Hyeon
Starring Kim Sang-kyung
Ahn Sung-ki
Lee Yo-won
Lee Joon-gi
Music by Kim Seong-hyeon
Cinematography Lee Du-nam
Edited by Wang Sang-ik
Ham Sung-won
Distributed by CJ Entertainment
Release dates
  • July 27, 2007 (2007-07-27)
Running time
118 minutes
Country South Korea
Language Korean
Budget US$10 million
Box office US$49,282,156[1]

May 18 (Hangul: 화려한 휴가; RR: Hwaryeohan hyuga; lit. "Splendid Holiday") is a South Korean film released in 2007.[2][3]


The film is based on the massacre at Gwangju on May 18, 1980. It occurred when General Chun Doo-hwan tried to eliminate any rebels by using military force.

Min-woo leads a relatively peaceful life with his younger brother Jin-woo—until the day the soldiers go on the rampage against the citizens. The citizens form a militia determined to protect their loved ones, and Min-woo finds himself in the middle of it all.

Timeline of the Gwangju Massacre[edit]

May 17, 1980[edit]

After the Coup d'état of December Twelfth (1979) in Seoul, ROK Army Lieutenant General Chun Doo-hwan, commander of Defense Security Command, declared martial law on May 17, 1980, to suppress student demonstrations around the country. The next day, students in Gwangju protested at the gate of Chonnam National University against the closing of the university, when airborne paratroopers blocking the university responded with violent means. After the incident, students moved into the downtown area, where they were joined by the citizens of the city. The growing crowd was met by the use of force, including gunfire, that caused some fatalities.

May 20, 1980[edit]

As the news of the fatalities spread, on May 20, protesters burned down the Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation local station which, under effective government control, portrayed the protests as hooligans led by Communist agents. By May 21, some 300,000 people had joined the protest against the General's power; weapons depots and police stations were looted of their weapons and the civil militias, known as the Citizen Army, beat back the armed forces, killing several soldiers.

With all routes and communications leading in and out of the city blocked by armed forces, a civilian body was formed to maintain order and conduct negotiations with the government. Although order was well maintained, a number of negotiations to resolve the situation failed to achieve any results.

May 27, 1980[edit]

On May 27, airborne and army troops from five divisions were inserted and defeated the civil militias in the downtown area in only 90 minutes.


  • Kim Sang-kyung as Kang Min-woo
  • Ahn Sung-ki as Park Heung-soo
  • Lee Yo-won as Park Shin-ae
  • Lee Joon-gi as Kang Jin-woo
  • Park Chul-min as In-bong
  • Park Won-sang as Yong-dae
  • Song Jae-ho as Priest Kim
  • Na Moon-hee as Naju-daek
  • Son Byung-ho as Teacher Jung
  • Baek Bong-ki as Won-ki
  • Jung In-gi as Jin-chul
  • Lee Eol as Lieutenant Colonel Bae
  • Choi Jae-hwan as Byung-jo
  • Yoo Hyung-kwan as Byung-jo's father
  • Im Hyun-sung as Sang-pil
  • Park Yong-soo as General Jung
  • Kwon Tae-won as General Choi
  • Uhm Hyo-sup as Captain Kim
  • Kim Cheol-ki as Corporal Yoo

Awards and nominations[edit]

2007 Blue Dragon Film Awards[4]
  • Nomination – Best Film
  • Nomination – Best Actor – Kim Sang-kyung
  • Nomination – Best Actress – Lee Yo-won
  • Nomination – Best Director – Kim Ji-hoon
  • Nomination – Best Supporting Actor – Park Chul-min
  • Nomination – Best Screenplay – Na Hyeon
  • Nomination – Best Cinematography – Lee Du-man
  • Nomination – Best Art Direction – Park Il-hyun
2007 Korea Movie Star Awards
2007 Korean Film Awards
  • Nomination – Best Supporting Actor – Park Chul-min
  • Nomination – Best Art Direction – Park Il-hyun
  • Nomination – Best Visual Effects – Kim Jong-su
  • Nomination – Best Sound – Jang Gwang-su
2008 Baeksang Arts Awards
  • Nomination – Best Film
2008 Grand Bell Awards


  1. ^ "Hwaryeohan Hyuga (May 18) (2007)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2014-02-07.
  2. ^ Lee, Hyo-won (10 July 2007). "May 18 Remembers Heroes of Gwangju". The Korea Times. 
  3. ^ Lee, Hoo-nam (11 July 2007). "Director has a mission to remember". Korea JoongAng Daily. 
  4. ^ "May 18 – Awards". Cinemasie. Retrieved 2014-02-07.

External links[edit]