[Korean Movies/Park Chan-wook]South Korean director Park Chan-wook’s “Revenge Trilogy” can be called a classic of violent aesthetics. The second film “Original Criminal” won the Jury Prize at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival, making him a popular filmmaker in the international film industry. Later, in 2016, he was once again shortlisted for the Cannes main competition with “The Seduction of a Housemaid”. Last year, he won the Best Director Award at the Cannes Film Festival for “The Determination of Breaking Up”. He is also the only Korean to be invited to three of the three major European film festivals. director.
This time, “It’s Scary to Think About: A Park Chan-wook Retrospective” will review his legendary film career and re-screen eight classic feature films. Among them, “The Seduction of a Housemaid” will show an extended version of more than 20 minutes of never-before-seen footage. , the director himself will come to Hong Kong to give a master class in person, which filmmakers and fans should not miss.
Park Chan-wook also won the Best Director at the Cannes Film Festival this year for his film “The Decision to Break Up”.
Park Chan-wook’s “Revenge Trilogy” “Revenge”
Re-release dates: December 10, December 30
Park Chan-wook’s “Revenge Trilogy” is a must-see classic for movie fans. The plots of the three movies are different, but they all use “revenge” as the main story, revealing the appearance of human nature from different levels. Among them, “Revenge” is the first chapter in the trilogy. It tells the story of Yoo (played by Shin Ha Kyun), who was born deaf and mute. He worked diligently to save his sister who needed a kidney transplant to save her life, but was fired by his supervisor. He took his salary and planned to go to an organ trading organization to exchange for a suitable kidney, but he was defrauded and lost his kidney. When he was desperate, his girlfriend suggested that he kidnap the children of rich families, so he decided to kidnap the daughter of factory owner Dong Jin (played by Song Kanghao) to extort money. However, the little girl accidentally drowned, setting Dongzhen on the road to revenge. The story takes the despair caused by “accidental errors” to the extreme. The dialogue is concise and the visual style is strong. Park Chan-wook calls this a typical “hard-core” movie, and it is also known as Park Chan-wook’s strongest style work.
Park Chan-wook’s “Revenge Trilogy” “The Original Criminal”
Name: Original criminal
Re-release dates: December 1, December 10
The second part of the “Revenge Trilogy”, “Original Criminal”, won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 2003. The script was adapted from the Japanese comic “The Iron Man” and tells the story of Oh Dae-soo (played by Choi Min-sik) who was suddenly attacked on the night of his daughter’s fourth birthday. Kidnapped and held in solitary confinement in a hotel room for 15 years for no reason. During this period, he lived on food outside the door every day and relied on the TV in the room to obtain outside information. One day he learned that his wife had been murdered and he became the main suspect. He could not escape and his suicide was stopped, but one day he was suddenly released. Later, he fell in love with the sushi chef girl Mido (played by Kang Hye Jung), but he received a call asking him to find out the reason for his imprisonment within five days, otherwise he would kill Mido. In the movie, Choi Min-sik swallows an octopus alive, which is shocking. The corridor fight scene has influenced many subsequent Hollywood productions. The violent aesthetics displayed can be regarded as a classic in the film industry.
Park Chan-wook’s “Revenge Trilogy” “Friendly Gold”
Name: Dear Gold
Re-release dates: December 10, December 16
The “Revenge Trilogy” ends with the female-led drama “Friendly Gold”, which tells the story of Kim Mong-ae, played by Lee Young-ae, who was wrongly imprisoned for thirteen years, during which she was forced to be separated from her beloved daughter. Because she was kind-hearted in prison, she was called “Friendly Gold” by other prisoners, but she was planning revenge every day. After finding Teacher Bai who framed her back then, she gathered all the family members of the victims, and each of them lynched Teacher Bai separately. deal with.
The most violent lynchings in the movie are not on camera, and only the various reactions of the perpetrators can be seen, shifting the focus from the revenge scene to the inner description of the characters, maximizing the psychological horror. The work swept the 2005 Blue Dragon Awards for Best Film and Best Actress, and also won the Little Golden Lion Award and the Best Innovative Film Award at the Venice Film Festival. It is worth noting that the “Revenge Trilogy” all has screenings on December 10, and will be played in the order of release time. Interested movie fans can watch it in a marathon.
In addition to the beautiful sex scenes between Kim Min-hee and Kim Tae-ri, “The Seduction of a Housemaid” also has black thriller elements in the plot, challenging taboo love themes. (Still from “The Housemaid Seduces Crime”)
Title: Seduction of a Bastard (Extended Version)
Dates: November 18, November 24-25, December 3, December 17
Among Asian gay-themed movies, “The Seduction of Women” must have its place. In 2022, it was selected as “16 Must-See LBGTQ Movies” by Time Magazine. The film is adapted from the novel “City of Thorns” by British writer Sarah Walters. It tells the story of the aristocratic daughter Hideko (played by Kim Min-hee) who inherited a large inheritance in Japanese-occupied Korea and attracted the con man Count Fujiwara (played by Ha Jung-woo). ) coveted, so he commissioned a thief Sook-hee (played by Kim Tae-ri) to pretend to be a maid and sneak into a Western-style mansion to approach Hideko and persuade her to accept her marriage to Earl Fujiwara. However, after Sook-hee and Hideko became closer, he discovered that Hideko’s uncle had taught Ming in the previous month. (played by Zhao Zhenxiong) may be the most important person behind it.
The film was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the 69th Cannes Film Festival and won the Best Non-English Film at the 71st British Academy Film Awards. The movie shots implement Park Chan-wook’s dark style. At the same time, the erotic scenes in the movie progress according to the plot, challenging the audience’s acceptance with sensitive themes. The re-screening of “The Seduction of a Housemaid” is an extended version, which is 20 minutes longer than the original version. Fans may wish to watch it again to add plot details.
Stills of “Determination to Break Up”
Name: Determination to break up
Re-release dates: December 9, December 31
The last thing I want to introduce is “Determination to Break Up”, which was released last year and was also co-written with golden partner Ding Ruiqing. The story tells the story of veteran detective Hae Jun (played by Park Hae Il) who met the deceased’s wife Seo Lai (played by Tang Wei) while investigating a corpse at the foot of the mountain. Ruilai is a Chinese immigrant who is unfamiliar with Korean and is decades younger than her husband. She works as a caregiver for the elderly. Her calm behavior after her husband’s death made the police suspicious, so Haejun began to closely monitor Ruilai and even tracked her every move at home, gradually making Haejun obsessed with Ruilai. After Ruilai was eliminated as a suspect, the two got closer and closer, but Haejun discovered that she might be the real murderer of her husband. Love and moral pressure were intertwined, leading to an irreversible situation.
Finally, the highlight of this film festival is the master class given by director Park Chan-wook in person in Hong Kong. It will be held after the screening of “The Determination of Breaking Up” on December 9. During the meeting, he will discuss his film career and the beginning of the new millennium with Lingnan University Associate Professor Li Suzhen. A dialogue on the rise of South Korean cinema. The lecture is conducted in Korean, with English and Cantonese interpretation provided. Movie fans should not miss it.