Korean Film Festival in Ottawa June 26-29

The Front Line opens the Korean Film Festival
Korean cinema has seen a boon in recent years. The Asian nation has produced a variety of strong and distinct films that appeal to a range of fans from action-pic die-hards to world cinema festivalgoers. The success of Korean cinema has brought international recognition to directors like Chan-wook Park (Old Boy, Stoker) and created megastars like Jeon do-yeon (The Housemaid, Secret Sunshine) who see the kind of fame enjoyed by Hollywood stars. While it’s easy to catch gems like The Housemaid or the controversial Pieta on the festival circuit and in major markets, Korean films are few and far between on Ottawa screens. The Canadian Film Institute hopes to remedy that this June by presenting Ottawa with the first Korean Film Festival from June 26-29.The fest includes several Ottawa premieres and a screening of one of the most celebrated contemporary Korean films.

2013 is an appropriate year for the festival, as the Canadian Government officially designated 2013 as the Year of Korea in Canada. To mark the occasion, the CFI is collaborating with the Embassy of the Republic of Korea and Ciné-Asie to showcase the strength of Korean cinema.
Hye-ja Kim in Mother
Four features and a selections of shorts will screen at the Korean Film Festival. KFF begins with The Front Line, which was South Korea’s submission for Best Foreign Language film in the Oscar Race for 2011. The festival concludes with a screening of Joon-ho Bong’s 2009 Mother, a landmark of contemporary Korean cinema that won a host of international awards including Best Actress from the Los Angeles Film Critics for Hye-ja Kim’s spectacular performance. Mother should be of special interest for those who missed it, as Joon-ho Bong will be returning to the screen this year with his Engligh-language debut Snowpiercer, a hotly anticipated international co-production starring Tilda Swinton, Chris Evans, Ed Harris, Octavia Spencer, and John Hurt.

The line-up for the Korean Film Festival presented in Ottawa is as follows:

The Front Line
Dir. Jang Hun | 2012 | 133 min. (Ottawa premiere)
Wednesday, June 26, 2013, 7:00 pm,

Synopsis: A drama centered on the Korean War's final battle that will determine the border between north and south.

War of the Arrows
Dir. Kim Han-min | 2012 | 122 min. (Ottawa premiere)
Thursday, June 27, 2013, 7:00 pm

Synopsis: Set during the second Manchu invasion of Korea, Nam Yi, the best archer in Korea, goes up against the Qing Dynasty to save his younger sister Ja In - who was dragged away by Manchurian.

Architecture 101
Dir. Lee Yong-Joo | 2012 | 118 min. (Ottawa Premiere)
Friday, June 28, 2013, 7:00 pm

Synopsis: A coming-of-age-tale of love lost and found.

Mise-en-scène Short Film Festival Programme
Dir. Various | 2011-2012 | 95 min.
Friday, June 28, 2013, 9:15 pm, Auditorium
Synopsis: A selection of contemporary Korean short films.

Dir. Bong Joon-ho | 2009 | 128 min.
Saturday, June 29, 2013, 7:00 pm

Synopsis: When her son is accused of murder, a mother conducts her own investigation.

All screenings include English sub-titles and take place at the Auditorium of 395 Wellington Street in Ottawa. Tickets are available at the door each night, $12.00 for the general public and $8.00 for members, seniors, and students. Visit www.cfi-icf.ca for complete listings. And please visit www.koreanfilm.ca for more information of the Korean Film Festival.

The Korean Film Festival runs June 26-29.