You can’t walk around central London at the moment without tripping over a film festival or two. Just as LFF prepares to launch in less than three weeks the LKFF has launched its own programme for London Korean Film Festival 2018. The festival will run across London venues for the first two weeks of November before touring highlight throughout the UK. The full programme can be found in this beautifully formatted PDF and more details of the festival are available at the LKFF website.
Earlier this week we were treated to a teaser screening of Lee Kwang-kuk’s A Tiger In Winter, setting the tone for the festival which this year focuses on the theme of “A Slice of Everyday Life”. Overall this year’s line-up leans closer to Hong Sang-soo than Park Chan-wook, but there a still thrills to be found amongst the selection of over 50 contemporary films.
Below are my three top picks for which I have already treated myself to tickets:
Kim Tae-ri grabbed everyone’s attention when she made her feature film debut in the sumptuous and twisty The Handmaiden and continues to charm in Netflix’s historic epic Mr. Sunshine. Now she is back on the big screen in Yim Soon-rye’s Little Forest; a film about food, relationships, and food. Frankly it looks freaking charming and I want a bit more of that in my life.
Hotel by the River
Did someone say Hong Sang-soo? I cannot resist this man and his idiosyncratic oeuvre. Looked at the wrong way his films can seem slow and aimless but when properly indulged Hong’s humour and subtlety deliver great dividends. He has once again teamed with the other star of The Handmaiden Kim Min-hee and other Hong regulars to produce a comedy drama about death, poetry, and men making a fool of themselves (I assume).
At some point a few months ago I added Lee Dong-eun’s second feature to my always growing list of films I need to watch so seeing it on the line-up for LKFF meant I had to buy a ticket. The only issue is that I have no recollection of why I added it to my watchlist; I just have to have faith that I knew what I was doing. A drama exploring themes of parenthood and familial connections that has to be worth a watch. Right, past me?