Last week, entertainment giant Sony decided not to release its film The Interview in theatres after a massive cyberattack on its computer systems. The comedy shows two American journalists assassinating  North Korea’s Dear Leader Kim Jong-un and Sony claimed the hackers owed allegiance to the communist state.

Of course, the incident makes you wonder what kind of movie Kim would want his citizens to watch. Here is one example. It’s called Comrade Kim Goes Flying, and it is about a humble mine worker who overcomes various obstacles to become her country's best acrobat.

Made in 2012, Comrade Kim Goes Flying has been shown at film festivals around the world, including the International Film Festival of Kerala that year. If you didn’t know that the movie was partly produced by the North Korean regime, you might assume that it is a satire about a dictatorship in which everybody is treated well, fed well (there are conspicuous shots of meals being consumed) and housed comfortably.

Where’s the conflict if her world is so perfect, a scriptwriter would ask? Our doughty heroine Kim, possessor of great teeth and endless enthusiasm, wants to be an acrobat, but she is ridiculed by the wealthy and spoilt son from just the kind of family that would plot against the Dear Leader. Kim overcomes the opposition with the kind of go-girl! enthusiasm that is a staple element of the underdog saga and brings glory to herself and her father.

Comrade Kim Goes Flying was shot entirely in North Korea. It has been directed by British filmmaker Nick Bonner, who has made documentaries about the country, along with Anja Daelemans from Belgium. When Comrade Kim was being shown at film festivals, Bonner vehemently denied that it was a propaganda tool by the North Korean rulers to prove to the West that their country is far from being a brutal dictatorship responsible for starvation and human rights abuses.

As controversy continues to rage about The Interview, British film critic Simon Fowler sheds light on what filmmaking is like in that country at the blog And at, you can create your own film in praise of the Dear Leader. Like Comrade Kim Goes Flying, it is not clear whether this is a spoof website or a genuine effort by a country that has forgotten the difference between truth and propaganda.