Following its critically acclaimed UK theatrical release in January, Yang Ik-june’s award winning Breathless comes to DVD on 22nd March 2010 as a two-disc Special Collector’s Edition featuring a host of exclusive extras including interviews with the director and cast members, specially filmed festival footage and Q&As, plus a collector’s booklet featuring sleeve notes personally written by Yang Ik-june and co-star Kim Kkobbi.
Special Features include: interview with director Yang Ik-june (20 minutes); interview with actress Kim Kkobbi (10 minutes – she was in London recently to record this); behind the scenes at the Rotterdam Film Festival (20 minutes); special Korean Film Industry Preview Screening footage (10 minutes); London Korean Film Festival Q&A at the Barbican Centre; London Press Junket footage; trailers (Korean theatrical, Korean teaser, three UK trailers, French trailer); stills gallery.
The winner of numerous international film awards in 2009, including the LKL film of the year, the Tiger Award at the Rotterdam International Film Festival, the Jury Prize for Best Film and Best Male Performance at Montreal’s Fant-Asia Film Festival and the Best Film award and Critics’ Prize at the Deauville Asian Film Festival, the debut feature from South Korean writer-director and star Yang Ik-june, Breathlessis a brutal, uncompromising and profanity-filled look at the cause and effect of domestic violence.
Giving a stunning performance in the film’s lead role, Yang Ik-june stars as Sang-hoon, a deeply troubled man prone to violent outbursts, who freelances as a hired thug at his friend’s debt collecting firm. His private life revolves around his extremely strained relationship with his ex-convict father, who was directly responsible for the tragic breakdown of their family, and a slightly more subdued, but still difficult, connection with his stepsister and her young son.
Seemingly possessed by the pent-up rage caused by the domestic events from his past, Sang-hoon finds an opportunity for salvation when he encounters a similarly emotionally damaged schoolgirl (Kot-bi Kim), who is as foul-mouthed, headstrong and fearless as he is. The two begin an offbeat and touching friendship, not realising that their lives are already connected in ways that will have a profound effect on both their fates.
As moving as it is shocking in its portrayal of people struggling to live in a world of routine violence and abuse, Breathless was hailed by ReelAsian.com as “one of the most powerful films of the year” and by Screen International as a film that marks director Yang Ik-june as a name to watch.
Breathless (cert. 18) will be released on DVD (£14.99) by Terracotta Distribution on 22nd March 2010.