Apple TV Plus’ Pachinko trailer looks heartbreaking and gorgeous


You know how it is: You’re listlessly scanning the streaming services, looking for something that triggers anything other than “Bleh” in your brain as you scroll through an infinite library of content. Then a thought pops into your head: “Hey!” you think, “What about a sweeping dramatic vision of multiple generations of 20th Century Korean and Japanese history, told through the perspective of a single complicated family with complex chains of inter-twining lives?”

You’re in luck, very specific hypothetical person: Apple TV+ has just debuted a new trailer for Pachinko, its new TV series based on the critically acclaimed novel by Min Jin Lee. Like the book, the series follows the life of Sunja (played, at various points in her life, by Youn Yuh-Jung, Kim Min-Ha, and Jeon Yu-Na), as she grows from a young woman struggling with poverty and familial expectations in Korea, eventually becoming the matriarch of her own wide-faring family. Along the way, their lives interact with the modernization of both Korea and Japan, the rising influence of organized crime families, religious persecution, and the lingering after-effects of World War II.

The series was created by The Terror’s Soo Hugh, with filmmaker Kogonada and director Justin Chon handling directing duties on four of the show’s eight installments apiece.

The trailer for Pachinko cuts aggressively across the various areas and locales covered by the best-selling novel, telling a multi-generational story that tracks Sunja and her kids as they slowly rise in the world; the book itself was far more linear, telling each generation of the family’s story in order. (It’s not clear yet if the show proper will adopt a similar structure.) In addition to Youn, the series also stars Lee Min-Ho, Jin Ha, Anna Sawai, and Soji Arai as parts of Sunja’s extended family.

Pachinko is set to begin airing on Apple TV+ on March 25.

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