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A Kim Jong-Il Production

The Extraordinary True Story of a Kidnapped Filmmaker, His Star Actress, and a Young Dictator's Rise to Power

by Paul Fischer

A Kim Jong-Il Production by Paul Fischer X
A Kim Jong-Il Production by Paul Fischer
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2015, 368 pages

    Nov 2015, 368 pages


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There are currently 23 member reviews
for A Kim Jong-Il Production
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  • Vicki C. (Franklin, TN)
    A Kim Jong-Il Production
    Wow! Having read a little about the Kims' regime I was still shocked by the revelations in this book that further exposed their cruel and egotistical indifference to an entire country! Fischer's book was well-researched and with the accounts of the South Korean movie mogul and his wife seemed to support what little most of the free world has read concerning the ruling family of North Korea. I recommend reading 'The Orphan Master's Son' along with this work of follows along quite nicely. This is one of those books that makes it a little more difficult to sleep at night, knowing there exists a country with nuclear bomb capacity that despises the West ( in particular the U.S.) and is controlled by an egomaniacal family who seemingly will stop at nothing to achieve their bizarre goals.
  • Candace B. (Grand Island, NY)
    Truth is Stranger Than Fiction
    Reading this book is a bit like falling down Alice's rabbit have this strange disoriented sensation of disbelief and distortion of reality. This true story takes you to a place so different than your reality that you find yourself rereading parts trying to understand the demented minds of North Korea's leaders and the power of propaganda and fear. I found that reading it now with the current hoopla over the movie "The Interview" was especially timely and compelling. This book is a fairly quick read well worth the time.
  • Mal H. (Livermore, CA)
    Impeccably researched
    By sharing the couple's story, Fischer allows entrance into inner North Korea. Through the abduction of Shin Sang-0k and Choi Eun-Hee we realize how intricate and nefarious North Korea operated under the dictatorship of Kim Jong-Il. Prison conditions beyond harsh, the educating of youth, the treatment of citizens all exposed. I found the unpredictable and absurd behavior of Kim Jong-Il while under the influence or entertaining downright hilarious, he is unbelievably self-absorbed and power hungry. Luckily Shin Sang-0k and Choi Eun-Hee played the role of their lives and outsmarted Kim Jong-Il. I was astounded by the bevy of abductions committed by North Korea, people from all nations at risk.

    Shin Sang-0k and Choi Eun-Hee endured much, not nearly as a horrific ordeal as others, nonetheless grueling. Their plight makes for an engrossing page turning story. You find yourself appalled by the audacity of this isolated communist nation and its narcissist dictator. This story feels like a movie, it's too absurd to believe but with North Korea anything is truly possible with their thinking and antics.

    Fischer scores high with research and writing. A wonderful view of North Korea from the inside out. Quite a page turner of a story. Unbelievable story but it's very true. Highly recommend.
  • Lynne B. (South Lake Tahoe, CA)
    A Kim Jong Il Production- Life in North Korea
    Paul Fischer has exposed life in North Korea as never before seen. This amazing story of the kidnapping of a South Korean movie director and his movie star wife was heart wrenching and exhilarating at the same time. Through their difficult experiences as captives of Kim Jong Il we come to see how North Korea has been living with the iron hand control of its socialist leaders. It is very disturbing to learn the truth of how the citizens have been brainwashed to extreme ignorance and misunderstanding of what exists beyond the country's boundaries. This book will be especially appealing to the public in light of recent news headlines on North Korea's supposed involvement with Sony Pictures. This story could well be the Unbroken of the movie world. There is certainly much to discuss in this book and it should definitely be a recommendation for book clubs.
  • Carole R. (Burlington, WI)
    You can't make this stuff up. . .
    With so little access to North Korea, it must be very difficult to present a true picture or accounting of life in that desolate country. Fischer, using interviews of this books main characters, gives us a glimpse into the strange priorities of Kim-Jong-Il during his tenure. Fiction readers will relate this book to The Orphan Master's Son and prefer the fictional weave of that book. Nonfiction readers will enjoy this book but might find its pace and resolution lacking. At the end even the author still had questions and loose strings. Good read but strangely unfulfilling.
  • Rebecca J. (Knoxville, TN)
    A Kim Jong-Il production by Paul Fischer
    This was a fascinating book especially in light of the Sony-North Korea dispute going on. Kim Jung-Il, before he was the leader, was in charge of entertainment (yes, that's what I said!) for N. Korea. He kidnaps the most famous South Korean actress and director and keeps them for several years (until they escape) to boost his country's film chops. It is an amazing story. I had seen a Lisa Ling documentary on N. Korea and so was familiar with Kim's craziness. Because of my familiarity with N. Korea, the book went on and on in some places for me, but I think most readers interested in other cultures would love this.
  • Lee M. (Creve Coeur, MO)
    Defection or?
    Based on a true story regarding the disappearance of an actress and her husband, a director, from South Korea. A few years later they reappear in North Korea. Whether they have defected or have been abducted has been a subject of many arguments whether you are North or South Korean. Mr. Fischer has written this accounting of what he believes really happened and lists the intense research that convinced him. Although Mr. Fischer patiently explains the difference in the regimes of the split county where this abduction/kidnapping occurred, in my opinion he never quite succeeds in describing the hatred, suspicion, jealousy and total animosity of the two Koreas. The absolute evil of one and the State controlled democracy of the other is so alien to us, but it is a worthy and interesting attempt at explaining the impossible.

Beyond the Book:
  Propaganda and its Uses

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