The third Asia House Pan-Asia Film Festival runs from 2-13 March 2011. Possibly reflecting the vibrancy of the Korean film scene, and despite the regular exposure of Korean films in the BFI London Film Festival, the London Korean Film Festival and the fortnightly screenings at the KCC, the Asia House festival contains two films with Korean connections.
Hong Sang-soo’s Hahaha will be showing on 5 March, giving a second chance for Londoners to see it (it was included in the Hong retrospective at the BFI last year). Possibly of more interest is the Japanese / Korean coproduction by director Yang Yonghi: Sona, the Other Myself, which screens at Asia House on 7 March:
In Yang Yonghi’s earlier film Dear Pyongyang, she related the story of her family split between Japan and North Korea. In Sona, the Other Myself, the focus shifts to her niece Sona and this next generation of the family born in North Korea. The film subtly observes this “remigration” comparing Yonghi’s own story to that of Sona, illustrating how the regime resonates in their everyday lives. (from the Asia House festival listings)
The film was in the official selection of the Pusan International Film Festival 2009 and Berlinale 2010
Yang Yong-hi is a second-generation ethnic Korean, born and raised in Japan. While her Korean mother was born in Japan, Yang’s father was born on Jeju Island and emigrated to Japan when he was 15 years old. Yang studied Korean Literature at the Korea University in Tokyo, and went on to receive a Masters in Media Studies from the New School University in New York City. Yang has worked as a bilingual radio host and was an actor in Bird (1992), a film that was jointly produced by Japan and North Korea. (from the PIFF 2009 site)
Probably the highest profile film of the festival is Norwegian Wood, directed by Tran Anh Hung and based on Haruki Murakami’s novel of the same name (screening at BAFTA on 2 March), but Brilliant Moon, a one-hour documentary about the life of Tibet’s most revered Buddhist teachers and writers, and a portrait of Aung San Suu Kyi, also look sure to gain attention. Other films come from Iran, Taiwan, China, India, Kurdistan and Kyrgyszstan.
I’m sure there’s a website for the festival somewhere, but at the moment I can’t find it. Other than the opening gala (Norwegian Wood) the films will screen at the Apollo Cinema Piccadilly Circus, 19 Lower Regent Street, SW1Y 4LR, or at Asia House. Asia House will also hold workshops and seminars on Asian film alongside the festival.
- Review of Sona, the Other Myself at The Hollywood Reporter, with extracts at the Marmot’s Hole for those who don’t subscribe to THR.
(automatically generated) Read LKL’s review of this event here.