So you know how most of my blog is dedicated to film reviews? WELL, my fabulous sister has an awesome blog where I post a lot of short stories and other fictional stuff. That’s right, the Filmkid dabbles in creative writing. So check it out here – tell me what you think.
OK.. this is just blatant publicity considering I’m heading the PR for the Korean Film Festival in Australia, but hear me out.
The 2nd official Korean Film Festival in Australia (KOFFIA) is on in Sydney this coming August 24 – 29, and they have a pretty wicked selection of films on show. Catering to the tastes of horror junkies, action/thriller lovers, indie hipsters and even family-friendly types, KOFFIA is a festival experience that celebrates the breakout of Korean films in international spaces.
Before the 90s, the Korean film industry wasn’t making back any of its money. Relying on Hollywood imports and cheesy melodrama to get people into cinemas, Korea’s film industry was on the verge of simply closing up shop due to its serious lack of profitability. But once the political and economic climate of Korea began to change so did the nation’s films. Even with direct American competition in the country itself, Korean production companies proved that strong concepts and original, innovative and visionary direction could beat foreign competitors, offering the world something that was culturally striking and yet, uniquely familiar.
Korean cinema now stands at a very interesting point in its history. As the eyes of international film festivals, leading American production companies and regional importers (such as China, Japan, and Vietnam) look to the Korean film industry for inspiration (and ways to make money), it seems like global audiences can’t get enough of what this geographically small but remarkable country has to offer in terms of its dramatic art onscreen.
And while celebrating Korean cinema’s success is a large part of what KOFFIA is all about, I think this special event in Sydney is more interesting and exciting in relation to Korean cinema’s rising position. That is to say, I don’t think Korean cinema has seen enough widespread attention (especially in Australia) in order to claim a dominant position in the international landscape of filmmaking. It is still a growing industry, and despite the success it may have seen in the past decade, the nation’s filmmakers are pulling all sorts of moves (good and bad) to win over an international audience. For this reason, Korean cinema deserves to be seen, reflected upon and at the very least, given a chance.
The Australian film industry itself is continually looking for ways to tell exciting, culturally-specific and yet, widely appreciated stories. Australian filmmakers, film buffs and movie-goers are those who have an eye for originality, inspiration and the daring in film, as we ourselves live in a country full of diverse ideas and people.
I am really looking forward to KOFFIA, and seeing what people’s responses to the films are. Whether you love it, hate it, couldn’t understand it or just got weirded out, I sincerely believe it is the distinctly different, new and eye-opening (literally!) experience that should compel you to go to KOFFIA.
(The Film Kid writes for this year’s Korean Film Festival in Australia; for my review of Night Fishing, click HERE)
While little is known about Park Chan-wook’s younger brother, Park Chan-kyung, there’s no doubt that their first collaborative short film, Night Fishing, will reel in some much-deserved attention for the talented filmmaker.
Beginning with a Cannes jury prize for his visceral thriller Old Boy, Park Chan-wook has preceded his brother in establishing himself as a critically acclaimed director of feature-length films – drawing increasing attention around the world with a U.S debut, Stoker, set to hit cinemas next year. While such success should really call for bitter sibling rivalry, Park Chan Kyung proved his own individualistic and visually engaging sense of direction in his first feature-length film, Anyang, Paradise City. The film debuted as the Korean Feature Film Competition winner at the Jeonju International Film Festival last year, combining fiction and documentary in eight episodes that traversed Anyang city’s past, contemporary life, politics and ancient folklore.
As a prominent Korean artist with extensive practice in media and installation art, Park Chan Kyung’s combined talents in filmmaking and art production then rise to the surface in Night Fishing as his imaging techniques give his brother’s internationally-renowned vision an added kick of freshness and originality.
In joining forces, the Park brothers prove there’s more to engrossing storytelling than high-tech equipment as their award-winning short was filmed entirely on an iPhone 4 (because Apple doesn’t get enough attention already). This makes Night Fishing the world’s first smartphone movie to receive the Golden Bear for best short film at the Berlin International Film Festival, and the first to be released in cinemas with its unique technological origins.
As the Park brothers challenge the conventions of filmmaking with an iPhone in Night Fishing, this artistically daring and bold work is sure to recognize the talents of Park Chan Kyung as the short film’s compelling story is given life through a convergence of two distinctly different visions.
Director Quentin Tarantino’s acting has always amused the hell out of me – his roles in From Dusk Till Dawn to Pulp Fiction being some of the best.
There had been rumours floating around that the Kill Bill director would be taking on a Western, namely The Angel, The Brute and The Wise, and that Franco Nero (i.e. the one and only originalDjango) would be in it.
Turns out Nero will actually be taking on the angel-brute-wise movie and Tarantino will be contributing as an actor! While nothing is formally concerned, this is one movie project that I am going to keep my eyes on.
Andrew Garfield is looking pretty nimble in his new Spiderman outfit as the reboot of the popular superhero will be flying into cinemas next summer. As fans will be able to get an exclusive preview into the grittier Spiderman film at next week’s Comic Con, it’s safe to say media hype is still stuck on superhero franchises – regardless of how many films, directors and stars can take on the same hero.
While I’m super unhappy about the fact that Park Chan Wook’s Old Boy is getting remade into a Hollywood film, my anxieties have decreased upon finding out that SPIKE LEE will be taking the director’s seat instead of the largely rumoured Steven Spielberg. How Hollywood is going to take on the disturbing twist is still a bit of a pickle.
If these pictures don’t get you excited, you need to go see a doctor. And no, I’m not talking about Blake Lively’s nude photos. I’m talking about some HOBBIT PICS that will no doubt catch the attention of LOTR fans. I totally regret not auditioning for hobbit-extra roles when I had the chance.