Approved for Adoption
Approved for AdoptionOriginal Title: Couleur de peau: Miel
Director: Jung Henin, Laurent Boileau
Belgium, France | French
Subtitles: Arabic and English
The animated documentary is a genre that has increased in popularity in recent years. It
offers innovative tools to reconstruct our imagination while allowing us to absorb pain and
sorrow in a more profound way – as in the hugely successful Waltz with Bashir
, which was
nominated for an Oscar in 2009.
Approved for Adoption is a personal account of the life of Jung Henin, based on his own
graphic novel. Henin was adopted as an orphan by a Belgian family in 1971, part of a wave
of some 200,000 Korean children who were adopted globally since the end of the Korean
War. When he returns to Seoul four decades later, he revisits his childhood memories, trying
to reconcile the intense feelings of insecurity and dual identity from which he has suffered.
Using a combination of different visual media, including film, home video and sketch
animation, Jung brings his past to light through a candid and vivid depiction of his family life.
Avoiding victimisation and stereotyping, he truthfully portrays his loving parents and siblings,
who fully embrace him despite the trouble he caused as a problem child. Yet, for Jung, an
adopted child from a different civilisation, discovering his identity remains a lifelong journey.
Poignant and inspired, Approved for Adoption
is not only a stimulating piece about the
complex issue of adoption but also a tour de force of animated nonfiction.
– Özge Calafato