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CCU film series presents free screening of ‘The Wailing’

January 9, 2018

Hong-jin Na’s 2016 South Korean horror film “The Wailing” will be shown Tuesday, Jan. 16, at 5 p.m. in the Coastal Theater as part of the Thomas W. and Robin W. Edwards College of Humanities and Fine Arts Religious Studies Movie Night. This event is free and open to the public.

“The Wailing” depicts the arrival of a mysterious stranger in a quiet, rural village that causes suspicion among the villagers. Shortly after, an unidentifiable disease starts breaking out in the village that causes violent murderous outbreaks, and as they begin killing each other, suspicion of the stranger turns to panic. When the daughter of the investigating officer falls under the same savage spell, he calls in a shaman to assist in finding the culprit.

Following the screening, CCU Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies faculty members Ron Green, associate professor, and Alan Todd, lecturer, will lead a discussion of the film’s philosophical themes and implications.

“The movie features a mixture of South Korean religious traditions as well as Christianity and shamanism,” says Green. “The audience never really knows which of these is wrong, which is right, which has our best interests at heart, and which is just trying to exploit our insecurities. This is apparently central to the director’s understanding of South Korean’s general experience of post-modernity.”

Green and Todd will discuss the vagueness present in “The Wailing” as well as religious literature and the ways this vagueness adds to the horror of the piece. They will also consider the differences between religious and standard Greek-inspired literature and that of American and Japanese horror films.

The film is not rated and may contain content that is inappropriate for children. Parental discretion is advised.

The Religious Studies Movie Night series is designed to explore the ways various religions are portrayed via film.

“Religions are collections of ideas, practices, values, and stories that have arisen out of and continue to be shaped by specific social, historical, and cultural contexts,” said Todd. “The constituent elements of religions are thus continually being interpreted and reinterpreted by both their practitioners and interested observers across time and cultures, aiding in their evolution. This phenomenon can be seen in films as their makers display their understandings of the foundational texts and stories of various religious traditions. This film series invites Coastal Carolina University’s community members to observe how cinema engages in this interpretative process.”

The Coastal Theater is located in Room A-110 of the Lib Jackson Student Union at 106 Spadoni Park Circle on the CCU main campus in Conway. Parking is available in lots E and MM; visit coastal.edu/safety/parking.

For more information, contact Todd at atodd1@coastal.edu or 843-349-4141. For more cultural events at CCU, visit coastal.edu, culturalarts.