Why Has Bodhi-Dharma Left for the East [Import]
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An old master shows Zen to his two disciples at a shabby mountain monastery, then dies.
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Top Customer Reviews
It's obvious now why Mr. Bae has never made another film: and it's unfortunate that so many people's wish to "see" Zen philosophy /spirituality has caused them to suspend their critical discernments and project depth into this amatuerish production. Decent, if unchallenging, cinematography though (hence the two stars).
This movie is not for everyone, because it is hard to understand Zen and other underlying stories (also the cinematography). I am not a Buddhist, but I think I know better than usual Western viewers. Keep in mind that my review is of novice.
At first scene, you hear very loud warning sounds from traffic signals and sounds of a train passing by. The sounds from wooden bells carried by Buddhists have been used to open the closed minds of common people (fools) by the strong wave energy penetrating into their inner minds. You later hear sounds of the wooden bell by the monk in the market. Also, you can hear various sounds from metallic bells and others in the movie.
The Zen koan is also used to open the closed mind by sudden striking force. You can not easily escape from old habits, stereotypes and various beliefs which you have accumulated and learned after your birth. To cut those connections which are usually obstacles to the Way to enlightenment, you need some sudden and strong force. A sound or koan can be used for this purpose.
'Karma' is a basic principle to make the story in the movie. The boy killed a bird. He later suffered in water. The cow symbolizes a kind of lucky guider when you are struggling to escape from darkness. Due to any kind of guider, you can have a chance to move toward the enlightenment or Nirvana, which is given because you have accomplished somethings or have helped other lives during the past life.
The woman wearing black Korean cloth is the boy's mother. She appeared in the dream of the boy when he struggled to escape from a crisis.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
2 hour long zen masterpiece. Definitely not for your conventional moviegoer, but incredibly worth the watch for the adventurous, spiritual or both.Published 14 months ago by IWantToBeAnElectricWizard
While I still don't see it as the masterpiece that many do, I
did enjoy it much more on 2nd viewing.
I do find it slow. Read more
If a Koan can be brought into a movie - this is it. In enchanting pictures with low enough speed to become aware of what is growing in the minds of the protagonists. Read morePublished on March 12 2010 by Reinhard Liebe
Watched this movie with my wife. She disliked it for its "stark realism" - I loved it for it's breathtaking imagery. Read morePublished on July 14 2004
My family and I love this movie, which we have watched 3 or 4 times. It is amazing just to watch how lovely each shot of film is. Read morePublished on April 22 2004 by Amazon Customer
As a Buddhist from a devout Buddhist family, I was delighted to find a film about the Mahayana. I bought it and brought it to California with me on a recent trip when I visited my... Read morePublished on Feb. 26 2004 by Furiae
Simply great film. But DVD conversion was so poor that I can never imagine people who watch this DVD could get an idea about what the real film was like. Read morePublished on Nov. 18 2002
If you're interested in Buddhism, especially the Zen schools, this movie will probably please you. Meditative and accessible, it's an almost purely visual film that nicely... Read morePublished on March 18 2002 by somebody nobody
I found this movie by chance and am so glad that I did. I have studied Zen as well as several other different lineages of Buddhism for most of my life and found this movie to be a... Read morePublished on Feb. 4 2002 by Perry L Buckner