The Weapon is a loose grouping of elements first seen in the 1951 British melodrama The Yellow Balloon. Jon Whitely plays a young London boy who finds a loaded gun in a blitzed-out building. He fires, accidentally shooting a playmate. Believing he’s killed his friend, the boy runs away–leading to a relentlessly suspenseful climax. Though filmed in England, The Weapon was geared from the start for primarily American audiences; its producer was Hollywood’s own Hal E. Chester, and its adult stars included Steve Cochran and Lizabeth Scott. The script was written by Fred Freiberger, best known to sci-fi followers as the producer of the original Star Trek’s third and final season.
Inspired by the true story of how a South Korean director was kidnapped in the 70s to invigorate the North’s movie industry, The Juche Idea is both sardonic satire and historical excavation, an exuberant collage that reveals the absurdity at the heart of Kim-Jong-il’s regime.