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18th Busan International Film Festival

by Carlos Aguilar
September 23, 2013 8:30 AM
1 Comment
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Khyentse Norbu's 'Vara: A Blessing'
Khyentse Norbu's 'Vara: A Blessing'

Showcasing the latest films from across the region, the Busan International Film Festival is undoubtedly one of the most influential film events in Asia. Besides the incredible amount of films from all over the world, highlighting the continent’s most prominent nations in the cinematic landscape (Japan, India, and South Korea itself), it also hosts the Asian Film Market. For it’s 18th edition taking place October 3rd to 12 th 2013, the festival has garnered an astonishing 299 films from 70 different countries, creating with this a fantastic gallery of autochthonous films from up-and-coming directors working in diverse Asian nations, but also infusing the mix with the best World Cinema has had to offer this year.

The festival will open with the Bhutanese film Vara: A Blessing, which is the third feature film by lama-turned-director Khyentse Norbu, and deals with the love affair between a men and woman from different castes. Closing the festival will be Kim Dong-hyun’s The Dinner, a family drama that deals with the characters’ financial issues and interpersonal relationships.

Kim Dong-hyun’s The Dinner
Kim Dong-hyun’s The Dinner

Among several other relevant sections, the festival’s “New Currents” will display 12 films that represent innovative or bold storytelling that explore social issues in non-traditional ways. One of the standouts of this section is the Philippine feature Transit by Hannah Espia about Philippine immigrants working in Israel, which was recently chosen as the country’s official submission for next year’s Academy Awards. Also in this section is the experimental narrative The Story of an Old Woman by Kazakh director Alexey Gorlov, whose feature debut depicts the life of the elderly lead character in a single, unedited,continuous shot.

Honoring the festival’s home country are two section’s that collectively represent the current state of Korean Cinema. The “Panorama” section includes 14 films from some of the most renowned filmmakers in the Asian nation, among them Hong Sang-soo's two latest features Our Sunhi and Nobody’s Daughter Haewon, Ki-duk Kim’s Moebius, and Lee Jang-ho’s first film in 18 years God’s Eye View. On the other side of the spectrum, the “Visions’ section is conformed of 10 films from the fast-growing Korean independent film arena that feature stories from varied genres, from gangster films to comedies.

Poster Busan Fest

Other sections include the “Unknown New Wave Central Asian Cinema” which is designed to shine light on forgotten gems from the Central Asian nations, 8 films from Kazakhstan. Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan will be presented at the festival, many of them for the first time in decades as they were considered lost. Lastly, the World Cinema section will bring the best from Cannes, Sundance, Toronto, and many other important markets to the Asian landscape. Blue is the Warmest Color, Fruitvale Station, Heli, and Inside Llewyn Davis are among the outstanding collection of films that will make their debut outside the European and North American circuits.

For for more information on the Festival click HERE

Free Indie Movies and Documentaries    

1 Comment

  • Ginger Liu | September 26, 2013 2:22 AMReply

    thanks Sydney. I had to look up "autochthonous." sounds like a great fest.

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