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Hong Sang-soo is April’s featured director at the KCC

The month the KCC will be featuring two early films by Hong Sang-soo. Tony Rayns will be introducing The Day a Pig Fell in the Well on 16 April. As usual, reservation is required via the KCC website.

Watch out for Song Kang-ho making his movie debut in a minor role in Hong’s first film.

An Introduction to Hong Sang-soo

A pre-screening talk by Tony Rayns
16 April, 7pm
Hong Sang-soo studied in the US in the early 1990s and returned to find the Korean film industry transformed by larger political and social changes. His debut feature, The Day a Pig Fell into the Well (1996), is arguably the most innovative and accomplished ever made in Korea. Tony Rayns will explore what makes the film so distinctive, and will look at the ways it prefigures (and differs from) Hong’s later films.

followed by:

The Day a Pig Fell into the Well (돼지가 우물에 빠진 날, 1996)

16 April, after the 7pm introductory talk
Cast: Kim Eui-sung, Park Jin-sung, Cho Eun-sook and Lee Eung-kyeong
113 mins

The Day a Pig Fell in the Well

The title derives from John Cheeverm’s short story, and the film portrays a struggling novelist. Hyo-seop is a miserable novelist who has not yet published a single decent novel. He visits a publishing company where one of his junior colleagues works only to confirm that his manuscripts are worthless. On the same night, he goes out for a drink with friends, gets into a fight with a critic and ends up in jail. While suffering from a sense of inferiority and victimhood for being treated as a third-class novelist, Hyo-seop falls madly in love with a married woman, Bo-kyung. Bo-kyung's husband Dong-woo has mysophobia, a fear of germs, and often goes on a business trip to Jinju. However, he doesn't trust Bo-kyung wholeheartedly. On the other hand, Minjae, a girl who works at a ticket booth in a movie theatre, dreams of marrying novelist Hyo-seop. She is a girl with some sense of vanity and illusion of becoming a novelist's wife. She is happy as she helps Hyo-seop with editing his manuscripts. However, Hyo-seop is not satisfied with Minjae and indulges himself in an affair with Bo-kyung.

The Power of Kangwon Province (강원도의 힘, 1998)

30 April, 7pm
Cast: Baek Jong-hak, Chun Jaehyun, Im Sunyoung
108 mins

The Power of Kangwon Province

It’s another hot humid summer in Seoul and a trip to the mountain and temples of Kangwon province could be just the thing to revive the spirit in the aftermath of a breakup. On the rebound from a love affair with Sang-kwon, her married university professor, Ji-sook joins two girlfriends on a trip to Kangwon province. Although Ji-sook is the only woman he’s ever loved, Sang-kwon seems to have moved on and is now searching for a tenured position. His trip to Kangwon province coincides with Ji-sook’s, and up in the mountains, they are brushed with the same tragedy. Both also have drunken spats with friends and indulge in joyless flirtations. Ji-sook meets a friendly policeman she later returns to visit and Sang-kwon, who has missed a rendezvous with a beautiful woman, ends up having unsatisfying sex with a prostitute. Ultimately, both leave Kangwon lonelier than ever.

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