Geon Kim’s “Keep Going” – 2016 Short Shorts Film Review


Someone, please give Geon Kim a job in the film industry.

That was the prevailing opinion – at least from this reviewer – after watching Kim’s science fiction work, “Keep Going,” practically blow away attendees at the Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2016.  Now in its eighteenth year, the event serves as an Academy Awards accredited film festival, meaning that Short Shorts award winners can potentially chase greater cinematic dreams at the Oscars in 2017.

For Kim, such possibilities must be comforting, considering that he had to work while directing “Keep Going” in order to finance the nearly 20-minute film.  It focuses on two main characters, a human girl named Yeonhee (Choi Bae-young in her acting debut) and a male robot called Margo, living in a chaotic world where man is pitted against machine.  Yeonhee’s and Margo’s unlikely alliance was made possible by the girl’s late father, who made sure that his daughter’s weak heart was taken care of by the robot.  As such, Margo ensures that Yeonhee is connected via tube to him at all times so that her heart continues to function, drawing the ire of human fighters who would rather see him eliminated.

Low on dialogue but extremely heavy on action scenes and CG, Kim’s slickly polished work could have easily been shown on the big screen as part of a longer feature, following the scores of impressive Korean action films in recent years.  Remarkably, “Keep Going” was actually Kim’s graduation film from the Korea National University of Arts, and clearly a labor of love.  The Facebook page for the film includes a back story for Margo and Yeonhee in comic form, and Kim admitted in a Short Shorts post-screening session on June 10 in Tokyo that he’s been “penniless” after spending an unknown amount of time working on the production.

Again, someone please give Geon Kim a job in the film industry.

“Keep Going” screens as part of the Asia International Competition & Japan Competition series at the Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2016 in Tokyo and Yokohama.  Future showings take place June 12, 19 and 22 alongside three other works; ticket information is available at and admission is free.

June 15 update: Geon Kim has won the Asia International Competition Best Short Award (Governor of Tokyo Award) at the Shorts Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2016 for “Keep Going.”