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  • Director : LEE Il-ha
  • Nation : Korea
  • Year : 2017
  • Running Time : 98min
  • Genre : Documentary

Screening Schedule

Date Time Venue Ratings Subtitles GT
2018-05-18 17:00 Seoul Cinema H GT
2018-05-22 15:00 Seoul Cinema H



Since 2013, Japan's extreme-right racist group has organized more than 1000 hate speeches around the nation. A schoolteacher, a deliveryman, a politician, an architect, and other ordinary citizens form a coalition to ‘counter’ the racist group, calling for the awakening of Japanese conscience. Spearheading the civic group, our problematic protagonist Takahashi, a former mid-level Yakuza boss is reborn, determined to fight against racism and discrimination.

-Program Note

Counters follows the Otokogumi’s activities founded by Takahashi against the haters in Japan. Otokogumi succeeds in passing the bill to ban ‘hate speech’. However, the film captivates the audiences not through the power of the political accomplishment but through the multidimensional aspects of Takahashi who is full of contradiction. Takahashi fulfills the social justice against ‘Zaitokukai’ which clams the racial discrimination while calling himself the right wing and visiting the shrine. Takashi, the ex-yakuza is more like the ‘stain’ which makes the existing values dividing the left-wing and right-wing or liberals and conservatives feel old, and it is the charm of him and his organization Otokogumi. Director LEE Il-ha tries not to judge Takahashi who is different from existing activists, but still he doesn’t hide that he tries to find the possibility of the new social movement in Takahashi. Then what shall we do with the inherent danger in that possibility? Can the hatred against human beings be removed from other human beings? What if it’s more important to correct the way to express the feelings than to remove the feelings? Then is ‘violent defense’ as the way of expression fighting against the violent o_ense right? Counters casts the serious questions while making the audience enjoy the film.(AHN Si-hwan)

- Director
LEE Il-ha
LEE Il-ha

LEE Il-ha studied at the Tama Art Univercity. He received his M.A. at the Nihon Univercity and completed the Doctorate program at the Osaka Univercity of Arts(Documentary major).


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