Comrade Kim Yong-mi is a 28 year-old coal miner who dreams of becoming a trapeze artist. Her father wants her to stay in her profession, but when she travels from her village to Pyongyang for a year to work at a construction site, she signs up for an audition at the circus – and fails. She is afraid of heights, and the handsome trapeze star Pak Jang-phil mocks her, telling her that «miners belong underground, not in the air». Eventually, through hard training and with the help of her colleagues, Kim does a stunning trapeze show at a worker’s festival. Even the arrogant Pak is impressed by Kim – and not just for her skills as an athlete...
COMRADE KIM GOES FLYING is the first Western-financed fiction feature film produced entirely inside North Korea. Despite its self-conscious retro style, it is no satire: This heart-warming romantic comedy has a lot in common with against-all-odds-classics like BILLY ELLIOT.
The team behind COMRADE KIM — Nicholas Bonner from England, Kim Gwang-hun from North Korea, and Anja Daelemans from Belgia – spent six years putting this film together. Bonner has visited TIFF twice (in 2006 and 2008), and is the producer of three documentaries about North-Korea: THE GAME OF THEIR LIVES, STATE OF MIND, and CROSSING THE LINE.