Burning ★★★★★

i gain a deeper and richer understanding of this film with every rewatch.

it's quite clear that ben feeds off of jong-su's class envy. his superiority complex requires him to have the advantage at every turn: intellectually, financially and physically.

that's why ben is reading faulkner in the café - and makes it obvious that he is. he most likely hadn't read faulkner before, but couldn't make that obvious, so he pretended to know his writing. thereafter, even though he thought he'd never see jong-su again, he had a compulsion to study faulkner's works and regain his sense of superiority. he couldn't allow jong-su to have any advantage over him. it's a subtle detail - one of many intricate ones strewn throughout the film - but one that is very satisfying to discover.

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