The Olympic fever is well and truly over, the London transport seems to be back to it’s miserable self and the weather is getting chilly. But before we go all woe with thee, next month sees the 56th BFI London Film Festival!!! The festival will run from 10 October to 21 October and these 12 days have been crammed with over 200 films from all over the world! Of course being Korean Class MASSIVE, we thought we would let you know about the latest Korean cinema offerings here in our capital city! There are a total of 6 films from South Korea this year and heres a quick low down: (all images and info curtsey of BFI)
This film was directed by Kim Jee Woon (A Tale of Two Sisters) and Yim Pil Sung (Hansel and Gretel), need we say more? You can already visualise the awesome cinematography of this film! This anthology of three tales was a collaboration which started in 2006 but due to production problems, the third segment was never filmed… until now! This film features 3 unrelated tales but with the same theme of “apocolapse and mankind’s moral decline” Hancinema. With Zombies, apocalypses and a buddhist robot, this is one film that is definitely on our TO WATCH list! :)
~ BFI website
Park Hongmin is a graduate student and he plays both screenwriter and director to A Fish. This film was shot on a shoestring budget hence it’s “home made” 3D. We have no idea what that means but BFI says it has been done perfectly so it will definitely be worth checking out! This is your chance to see something a little different from Korean cinema and possibly witness a future big gun of the cinema industry in the making. BFI has described this film as both irreducibly Korean and plausibly universal; a Thriller about a husband trying to track down his wife with the help of a psychotic detective. During all of this, the husband is also fighting a personal battle where he think’s he is possibly going crazy; which is always fun to watch!
An adaption of Miyabe Miyuki’s famous mystery thriller novel Burning Train. We see a fiance searching for his missing wife with his cousin who is a ex-cop that was dismissed by the force (you always need one of them). Of course being a Korean film, it’s never that simple so expect some unexpected twist and turns! BFI describes this film as: Byun Youngjoo’s hard-edged feminism shines through the snaking plot: this is ultimately the story of a victimised woman. But it gets all the male stuff right too. So something for everyone! But possibly not a perfect first date film…
Hong Sangsoo presents us with something a little different from the usual Korean Cinema. Hong is said to be known for her LOL films and that is what she aims to do with this film. Three French women all named Anne leave Seoul to spend a day on a boring beach resort. Hong is good at accurately capturing the reality of male and female relationships, for example all the lies we tell ourselves so this film is sure to be a fun one and a chance to also see a Foreigner’s adventures outside of buzzing Seoul.
Nameless Gangster: Rules of the Time
11 Oct – 8.45pm, 13 Ot – 3.30pm, 14 Oct – 6.15pm
Director Yoon Jongbin brings us Choi Minsik (star of Old Boy) in something for the boys. A corrupt customs office in Busan in 1982 (expect some amazing fashions!) collaborate with local thugs who speak in a language of muscles. But of course, when the money comes rolling in, a thugs life will never lead to a happy ending. BFI states that this film as the highest-grossing film of the year to date in Korea. It has obvious debts to Coppola and Scorsese, but the sardonic, satirical tone is all Yoon’s own. Whirlwind fun. A great film to get all those Hollywood action heads into Korean cinema!
Lee Kwangkuk brings us a nice little piece of Korean cinema. Here we see the usual heartwarming tales of everyday life. Lee interweaves the tales of a number of charming characters. Their stories although not related, shows how one thing can unexpectedly affect another and the unpredictability of the world. This is Lee Kwangkuk’s debuting feature after assisting Hong Sangsoo, so expect some good laughs!
And that is the 6 films from South Korea. But what is this? Commissioned by Hong Kong Film Festival, the collection of short films Beautiful 2012 also features work from Korean director Kim Tae Yong (Momento Mori). This is not Kim’s first short as he also took part in If you were me 4 with Lee Hyeon Seung. Kim’s short is about a closeted young man who hires a girl to play his fiancée for the benefit of his dying father. Beautiful 2012 is a specially hand picked collection of shorts by Hong Kong so a definite for all Asian film fans!
Tickets are currently on sale for Members of BFI but will not be on sale for us mere mortals until Monday 24 September at 9:30am. We expect it to be as popular as a Kpop concert so don’t miss out! All films are shown at a number of venues across London so please do make sure you double check! We would also like to point out, for all those wishing to catch all the South Korean offerings, make sure you plan your times as a few of the film times clash! But luckily all films have at least 2 screenings!