This episode focuses on the 1992 election of the 14th president of the Republic of Korea and the failed candidacy run of Chung Ju-yung, the founder and then honorary CEO of the Hyundai Group conglomerate. Starting with the death of Chung Ju-yung, the film explores his role in the consolidation of Korea’s economic and industrial strength as well as his public personality as displayed in interviews and debates broadcasted on public television throughout the years leading up to his candidacy. The documentary draws a broader picture of Korean society in the early 1990s, with its labour struggles, housing crisis and numerous other problems. By focusing on the election and the later years of Chung Ju-yung’s life, the film addresses the many contradictions underlying the period of high-growth in Korea and the culture of conflation between business and politics that enabled them.
Ricardo Matos Cabo