Every spring, there are some faces that come to mind. The young lives that were sacrificed due to the Sewol Ferry Disaster is a prevalent theme Korean films should continue to cover, now and even in the future. The documentary Jindo Requiem tells a story related to the Sewol Ferry Disaster by using a place called Jindo as its medium. It explains in layers how Jindo and its background was able to embrace the victims and their families with all their hearts. In addition, there were many outstanding documentaries this year. Comfort is the newest title from the director of My Place (2013), Emmanuel Moonchil PARK. Comfort reconstructs the life of an aged “comfort woman” in various dimensions. Her life makes us realize how important it is to see the ups and downs of a person to understand someone as a whole. Bora Bora vividly captures the struggles of toll gate workers who fought for their rights to full-time employment. This issue was a hot topic in the areas of labor and women's movements last year. The Land of My Father, which is about two Koreans struggling with issues surrounding Dokdo (Liancourt Rocks), is unexpectedly directed by an American director, Matthew KOSHMRL. The film points out issues of not only Korean government, but also of Japanese government from the outsider’s perspective. UFO Sketch is a unique documentary that takes a scientific approach. It centers around Professor MAENG Sunglyul, a researcher of UFOs, as well as others who believe in extraterrestrial beings and follow their traces.
New titles by returning filmmakers are also very interesting. Following Stranger than Jesus (2018), director YEO Kyundong is back with Stranger than the Beyond. Although most of the film is of two characters talking, not a single moment will leave you bored. KO Bongsoo, who visits JEONJU IFF almost every year, also returns with Fundamentalist. This is a story about a man struggling to find true love. Director SON Inhan of Ordinary Days (2010) also returned with a mystery thriller titled Teuri. It portrays the gloomy past in history when authoritarianism dominated. SHIN Suwon and LEE Dongeun’s new titles are short films. SHIN's Dancing with Wind is a story about a woman who meets “Wind” and is able to lessen the weight on her shoulders, and LEE's Post It! is about two children who learn about a magical world demonstrated by Post-it notes.
Many of the titles star familiar faces. KIM Myunggon and CHA Yukyung star in The Story of an Old Couple, which is the cinematic version of a play with the same title. It’s a touching story about a married couple who lived many years together in love and affection. Starring CHOI Mooseong, short film Break Away was is about the May 18 Democratic Uprising celebrating its 40th anniversary. Meanwhile, director NAMKOONG Sun had both her feature debut, Ten Months, and her short film, Digressions, invited to the festival. Digressions is a unique experimental film, while Ten Months follows a woman from her pregnancy to the birth in a serious yet entertaining tone.
Programmer MOON Seok
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