In Love and War (2011 film)

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In Love and War
Revised Romanization Jeokgwa-ui Dongchim
McCune–Reischauer Chŏkkwaŭi Tongch'im
Directed by Park Geon-yong
Produced by Kim Beom-sik
Han Kil-ro
Park Yong-soo
Written by Bae Se-young
Starring Kim Joo-hyuk
Jung Ryeo-won
Yoo Hae-jin
Music by Park Ji-man
Cinematography Jung Chan-hong
Edited by Shin Mi-kyeong
Distributed by Showbox/Mediaplex
Release date
  • April 27, 2011 (2011-04-27)
Running time
135 minutes
Country South Korea
Language Korean

In Love and War (Hangul적과의 동침; RRJeokgwa-ui Dongchim; lit. "Sleeping with the Enemy") is a 2011 South Korean comedy/drama/romance film starring Kim Joo-hyuk and Jung Ryeo-won.[1] In June 1950, soon after the Korean War breaks out, a troop of North Korean soldiers enter a small South Korean village. The troop captain proclaims that they came to liberate the villagers but their true agenda is to ferret out the reactionaries. The villagers offer them heartfelt hospitality and cooperation to avoid falling out of the army's favor. Eventually genuinely strong and close friendship starts to build up between the soldiers and the villagers.[2]

Screenwriter Bae Se-young was inspired by a true story in the life of her grandmother, who used to live in Pyeongtaek. A group of soldiers from the North Korean People's Army stayed for a couple of days at the grandmother's home (because her father was the village leader), and one young soldier, touched by the villagers' hospitality, said that he wanted to stay.[3]

When asked to describe the film, director Park Geon-yong said that its "main purpose is to highlight the plight of the most vulnerable people in the Korean War - innocent civilians." He said he "wanted to use it to inspire viewers to think about what the war left behind," and "tried to give the tragic story a light-hearted touch."[3]


In a remote village called Seokjeongni, the residents manage to learn that North Korean troops have invaded the South via the chief’s radio. Normalcy nevertheless continues for the villagers, who are all preoccupied with more pressing matters: an arranged wedding. Just a few days before the ceremony the groom is forced to flee when news breaks that Northern troops are fast capturing cities and annihilating anticommunist activists. But Seol-hee (Jung Ryeo-won) has no time to brood over her missing, beloved husband-to-be. North Korean troops arrive in town and announce their holy mission to "liberate" the Southerners.

As the chief's granddaughter and town's only schoolteacher, Seol-hee must remain strong — but instead of resisting the unwelcome guests she joins the town's intricate survival scheme and zealously embraces the Marxist teachings. Hot-tempered widower Jae-chun (Yoo Hae-jin), quiet yet clever Baek (Kim Sang-ho), and even Seol-hee's unassuming grandfather (Byun Hee-bong) manage to feign unwavering loyalty. Then a rivalry ensues between Seokjoengni and a neighboring village to host the construction of a bomb shelter under the soldiers' supervision.

Meanwhile, the troop's officer, Jung-woong (Kim Joo-hyuk), is propelled by an ulterior motive. He wants to find the charming young girl he met twelve years ago when Korea was one country.

What begins as a facade, however, develops into genuine and strong feelings among people who would have been neighbors if it hadn't been for geopolitics. Obvious signs of intensely pure romantic love also blossom between Jung-woong and Seol-hee, but the peaceful coexistence proves all too fragile amid the realities of war.[4]



  1. ^ Kang, Seung-hun (13 April 2011). "Jung Ryeo-won was sorry to see kissing scene cut in new film". 10Asia. Retrieved 2013-01-04. 
  2. ^ "In Love and War (2011)". The Chosun Ilbo. 29 April 2011. Retrieved 2013-01-04. 
  3. ^ a b Sung, So-young (22 April 2011). "A star-crossed couple divided by war". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-01-04. 
  4. ^ Lee, Hyo-won (14 April 2011). "Sappy drama muddles Korean War comedy". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-01-04. 

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