In Preview: 9th Annual London Korean Film Festival

by Daniel Goodwin on 29/10/2014

london korean film festival

Returning to the capital for its 9th year, the London Korean Film Festival will get underway at the Odeon West End from 6th – 15th November before moving on to Norwich, Hebden Bridge and Aberystwyth from 16th-21st November. The festival opens with recent Korean Box Office sensation Kundo: Age of the Rampant, a Robin Hood style adventure charting the final days of the corrupt Joseon Dynasty and the militia bandits who retaliated against their rulers. It is directed by Yoon Jong-bin (The Unforgiven, Beastie Boys) and stars Ha Jung-woo (The Chaser, Yellow Sea).

With over 40 films showcasing the very best of Korean cinema, the LKFF presents films from a variety of genres and will include commercial features, retrospective cult titles, critically acclaimed independents and also play host to guest appearances from established and emerging Korean talent as well as Q&A sessions from artists and industry professionals.

Director Han Jae-rim’s period drama The Face Reader premieres at the festival. Focusing on the ancient art of physiognomy, this court room based feature stars Song Kang-ho (The Host, Thirst, Snowpiercer) and Lee Jung-yae (New World, The Thieves) and tells the story of a fortune teller from a troubled, wealthy family and his indifference to greater conspiracies occurring around him.

Gyeongju, directed by Lu Zhang Zhang, will feature in the K-Spotlight section of the festival with emphasis being placed on the South Korean city of the title and setting of the film which is know for it’s hundreds of burial mounds. Gyeongju stars Park Hae-il (Boomerang Family) and Shin Mina.

K-BIFF’s Choice (New Korean Cinema strand) unveils Korea’s most critically lauded films from 2014, including Lee Su-jin’s multi-award winning Hang Gong Ju, a drama about a traumatised girl who is transferred to a new school then moves in with her teacher’s mother. While adapting to new surroundings she must also come to terms with the unexplained ordeal that is haunting her.

The festival will focus on the work of individual artists including renowned enfant terrible director Kim Ki-duk and will be premiering his three most recent titles One on One, Moebius and Pieta. Also under the spotlight will be Lee-Jun-dong, producer of Poetry (2010), who will also be attending the screening of her new film A Girl At My Door.

A new festival feature will present films inspired by contemporary Korean literature and upcoming young Korean actors will be showcased in conjunction with a screening of The Youth, by Kim jun-mu, Park Ka-hi and Joo Sung-su. There will also be short film screenings along with a number of Korean classics including The Housemaid (1960) directed by Kim Ki-young.

The award-winning Revivre will be the closing night gala on 15th November. From legendary director Im Kwon-taek (Chunhyang), it tells the story of conflicting, impossible loves as a middle-aged man comes to term with his wife’s recent death while falling for a young work colleague.

For more information you can visit the festival’s website:

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