Masters is a section that introduces the new films of great directors. It is also a section where the audience can look at the current era and the thoughts of cinema from the perspective of masters who have lived their whole lives making films. This year´s section is characterized by an increase in the number of short films. When the pandemic prevented directors from working on large-scale projects, they made their films in the studio, sometimes in nature, alone or with a small crew. Independently produced films by leading contemporary directors such as Lucrecia Martel, Tsai Ming-Liang, Radu Jude, and Andrei Ujică are presented in a subsection of Masters entitled "Masters´ Shorts."
One of the achievements of the 23rd edition is that we are able to introduce the films of masters that represent JEONJU IFF. These films are prepared to prove that a masterpiece can be created with minimal materials, extending the possibility of cinema as an image based language. First, Artavazd Pelechian, who is called a genius by Jean-Luc Godard and Sergei Parajanov, will present Nature, his first film in 27 years. Since the film was produced in 2020 with the support of the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art and released for the first time in 2021, we have the honor of introducing it at JEONJU IFF for the first time in Asia. The United States of America, directed by James Benning, who has had a long relationship with JEONJU IFF, connects the present with the cinematic time, revealing the essence of the film. The Korean film introduced in the Masters section is The 2nd Repatriation, directed by Kim Dongwon, who has been persistently creating documentaries with a free spirit. Following Repatriation (2003), which covered the repatriation movement for long-term unconverted North Koreans in South Korea and became the first Korean film to win an award at the Sundance Film Festival in 2004, The 2nd Repatriation portrays the hope individuals cling to in a world swayed by nations and its far-reaching political decisions.
The films notably provide a chance to look at the masters´ diverse approaches to human nature. Three films illustrate the influence politics and power dynamics hold on society. Lav Diaz´s History of Ha metaphorically depicts Philippine society after the death of President Ramón Magsaysay in 1957. Director Sergei Loznitsa, who spent his teenage years in Ukraine, conveys that the history of the past continues unchanged into the present in his two films; MR LANDSBERGIS which illustrates the life of a politician who led Lithuania´s independence from the former Soviet Union; and BABI YAR. CONTEXT which tells the story of the Nazi killing of 33,000 Ukrainian civilians. In addition, Terence Davies´ BENEDICTION about the poet Siegfried Loraine Sassoon and Rita Azevedo Gomes´ The Kegelstatt Trio, a reinterpretation of Éric Rohmer´s only play, explore human love, belief, and identity. Bertrand Bonello, one of the most unique directors in France, guides the audience to Coma, which depicts the world of teenagers and the virtual world, an urgent issue of this time. In this year’s Masters section, the number of films screened has increased compared to the previous year, including short films, and it will be a great pleasure to see the ideas of masters who never stop challenging the art.
Written by Programmer Sung MOON
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