North Korea’s First Girl Band: Moranbong

North Korean Girl Band, Moranbong

North Korean Girl Band, Moranbong

Let’s welcome the NK-Pop group Moranbong! This group of five main vocal singers accompanied by another five musicians is all the craze, which was formed under the guidance of North Korean’s young leader, Kim Jong-Un. This group which debuted in July 2012 shows contrast from Kim Jong-il’s former leadership and entertainment. While Kim Jong-il was a known movie-buff, his son may be taking the route to make a name for himself as a music-buff. Also knowing that Kim Jong-Un’s wife, Ri Sol-Ju was a former musician may have been an extra push for Moranbong.

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New North Korean film with British and Belgian film-makers

A new North Korean movie is currently on screens in various parts of the world. This new film was created with North Koreans, British, and Belgian film-makers. The first impression of watching the trailer is that the film quality has significantly increased. However, the setting and dubbed voice overs still remain very North Korean. It almost feels as if you are watching a movie that was released in the 1970s but now colorized and in HD.

The film-makers have also strongly denied any suggestion that this is a North Korean propaganda film. The film took six-years to make due to struggles with the North Korean side, which doesn’t come as a surprise. Nonetheless, this movie is sweeping many film festivals and Han Jong-Sim, the leading actress, has some new fame to deal with in North Korea. It’ll be interesting to see how Kim Jong-Il’s passion for film-making will translate into the Kim Jong-Un’s regime.


6/24/13 Today’s Brew

Today’s Brew focuses on North Korea.

North Korea's Instagram

North Korea’s Instagram

1. North Korea’s Instagram owned by German teenager

North Korea’s Instagram account believed to be an official account by the government was revealed to be a work of a German teenager just posting photos as a fan.

2. North Korean city, Kaesong, becomes UNESCO World Heritage Site

The same city where the shuttered joint economic complex between North Korea and South Korea was approved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Before modern drama ensued, Kaesong was the ancient capital of the Koryo Dynasty.

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Commentary on Vice Guide’s Trip to North Korea

North Korean Basketball Team with the Harlem Globetrotters (Screengrab from Vice)

North Korean Basketball Team with the Harlem Globetrotters (Screengrab from Vice)

Vice’s documentary on their high-profiled trip to North Korea aired on HBO Friday, June 14th. As they ticked another episode to their list of sensational journalism, North Korea is considered a bit like the holy grail for journalists since information is so restricted. The show’s running time was 30 minutes which seemed a bit ambitious for a trip that made headlines with Dennis Rodman as part of the traveling crew. The show did end up to seem quite a mirage of video footage, interviews, and monologues all jammed up every second. An extended version of the trip would be worthwhile to watch.

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