Daily Archives

October 19, 2018

by Lawrence Garcia Retrospective

List | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
List

For Hong Sang-soo, whose working method and steady output has been, and continues to be, (relatively) unburdened by production constraints, the notion of artistic freedom has never been much in question. And so it is with 2011’s List, a half-hour short film about a young woman (Jung Yu-mi) and her mother (Youn Yuh-jung) visiting a seaside town. After dodging her mother’s questions about potential marriage prospects, the woman composes a list of activities that she aims to complete by the…

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by Lawrence Garcia Retrospective

Hahaha | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
Hahaha

True to its title, 2010’s Hahaha is very funny — amusing in ways that might even cloak its generous, searching ambition. The film follows two skirt-chasing, barely-employed Korean men: Joong-sik (Yoo Jun-sang), a depressed film critic pursuing an extramarital affair, and Moon-kyung (Kim Sang-kyung), a director set to leave for a dead-end trip to Canada (and possibly the most pathetic manchild that director Hong Sang-soo has ever written).…

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by Ryan Swen Retrospective

Lost in the Mountains | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
Lost Mount

Lengthy runtimes have never been totally essential to Hong Sang-soo’s work, but there is a certain quality intrinsic to his approach — how he crafts long, languid scenes that accrue an emotional and comedic power through duration — that seems to benefit from the feature-length form. So, it is instructive to view Hong’s two shorts (discounting the delightful but less-than-two-minute 50:50, made for the Venice 70 – Future Reloaded omnibus — which InRO has not included in its retrospective) as…

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by Paul Attard Retrospective

Like You Know It All | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
Like You Know It All

As with many Hong Sang-soo films, 2009’s Like You Know It All deliberately repeats itself: Goo Kyeong-nam (Kim Tae-woo), an arthouse director, goes on two nearly identical trips — first to Jecheon, as a juror for the local film festival, and later to Jeju, as a guest speaker at a university — during which he bumps into long-forgotten friends, drinks heavily, and sleeps with someone’s wife. The chance encounters here serve as comedic fodder — Goo’s distractedness leads…

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by Kenji Fujishima Retrospective

Night and Day | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
Night and Day

Hong Sang-soo’s 2009 film Night and Day marks many firsts for the director, including his first film shot on digital and his first to be filmed outside his native South Korea. At 144 minutes, Night and Day is also Hong’s longest film by a considerable distance. That doesn’t mean that Night and Day is a radical departure for the filmmaker; it is, as with many of his films before it and many since, a merciless dissection of a self-absorbed male artist’s fragile ego…

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by Luke Gorham Retrospective

Woman on the Beach | Hong Sang-soo

October 19, 2018
Woman Beach

As perhaps the most narratively straightforward Hong Sang-soo film to date, albeit one still prone to a certain structural mischievousness, Woman on the Beach modulates its conceptual restraint in such a languid way as to allow its characters room to breathe. Interestingly, despite this active divergence of approach, Woman on the Beach opens with its Hong stand-in, arthouse director Kim Jung-rae (Kim Seung-woo), in a state of stasis.…

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