Directed by Kim, Hyun-Joo
Total Running Time: 8 minutes
Video Link (English Subtitled):
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2003 Women Digital Contents Competition President Award
2004 Brazil Anima Mundi
2004 Holland Animation Film Festival
2004 Shinchon Art Festival International Student Film Festival
2004 New York International Children's Film Festival
June the Pillow shows a child's attachment for an object and a happening caused by the attachment. Julie has an imaginary pillow friend named June. She draws a smile on the pillow and takes it with her wherever she goes and for whatever she does. The day before Julie's camping, it rains heavily and her mother tells her not to go to the camp. So disappointed, Julie cries in her room and dreams about her playing with June. On the camping day, she sneaks out from her mother and goes camping with her pillow friend. When her teacher, Miss Baker, sees Julie with her pillow, she tells her that she should not bring it to the camp because it is not adequate. But nothing can separate Julie from staying with June. The next day, Julie goes out to draw pictures with her friends but comes back to her camp to get her crayon. And there she sees her teacher resting her head on Julie's pillow. Seeing her June with Miss Baker, Julie first frowns, but soon feels happy to see the teacher liking her pillow.
Julie's strong attachment to the pillow reminds me of Linus Van Pelt's blanket in Snoopy by Charles M. Schulz. Linus always keeps his blanket with him, and if the blanket is not around him, he becomes extremely uneasy. I once had a doll and I had to have the doll with me in order to go to bed. I even took the doll in my bag to my family trip no matter what my mom and dad said.
As I was watching June the Pillow, I had a question: what is a grown-up? And I came up with an answer: losing subjectivity. In childhood, children cross the boundary between reality and imagination, and they can be friends with whatever is around them. With their new friends, children develop imagination. And the process of being adult means not only learning social convention that society requires, but also losing subjectivity of childhood. Usually, mothers and teachers are the ones who require their children to choose objectivity over subjectivity from childhood and become socialized with others.
To children, everything around them becomes their friends. Especially things that exist near them in the darkness become more special, like a pillow for they make children feel protective. However, grown-ups consider it immature or peculiar to be attached to a thing, as you can see the way the mother and the teacher treat Julie in June the Pillow. Adults, presented as Julie's mother and Miss Baker, the teacher, all had similar memories in their childhood like Julie, but they just do not remember them and see children’s act as strange.
Julie could have been separated from her June because of the camping. And her teacher makes her feel ashamed of bringing the pillow with her to the camp. Miss Baker views Julie and her pillow through the eye of a socialized adult, and tries to fit Julie to the law of adults. However, Julie and the teacher come to understand each other at the end of the film. Resting her head on Julie's pillow reminds Miss Baker of her childhood and makes her to realize how much she has changed since her childhood. She also remembers her childhood attachment, a blanket, through Julie, and they finally have a connection. We always think children should learn from adult, but in this case, Julie, a child, teaches Miss Baker, a grown-up, to bring back memories of her childhood. After all, what we need in this world is not objectivity filled with complicated theories or regulations, but subjectivity of childhood.