London Korea Film Festival – Opening Night


Entry to the Barbican

Opening night of the LKFF was tonight. The festival is being held the Barbican, a much favoured hang out of mine. The opening night movie was Thirst by Director Park Chan-wook. Mr. Park was on hand to give his own introduction to the movie, and it was the Director’s cut with an extra 18 minutes of footage.



The movie was, as can be expected of Park Chan-wook, engrossing, intriguing, violent and cringing. A great movie. To me it had elements familiar from other Park Chan-wook movies (the few that I’ve seen) but it was also very new and different. The audience for the sold out event appeared to be mostly old Korean men in suits and young people, mostly male. At the end of the movie I almost found myself on the way up to the after party but a diligent staffer noticed that I looked too scruffy to be among the elite (or I didn’t look like an old Korean men, which was what everyone else in the elevator I inadvertently got into looked like) and asked me if I was invited to the after party. I had no idea there was an after party but of course it makes sense.


Thirst at the LKFF

For his opening address, Park Chan-wook talked about the loneliness that comes from ending production of a film and how the people who work on a film become family so its sad when it ends. But then he finds a new family when it comes time to show the film to the audience. We the audience are his new family. Its surprising I wasn’t invited to the after party given our new status as relatives.

We were also given a free DVD each. My DVD was Lee Chang-dong’s film Green Fish. Mr Lee was the Director the awfully depressing, but very good movie, Secret Sunshine. The movie that my sister got was also Green Fish but the handsome man sitting next us let us swap for his DVD which was Oasis, also by Mr Lee and it also looks awfully depressing. One of my new year’s resolution this year is to avoid depressing stuff so I won’t be able to watch these movies until next year.


Park Chan-wook, genius


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November 2009
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