Visitors is the latest opus from the Jeonju Digital Project, an initiative begun in 2000 by the Jeonju International Festival (South Korea). Every year three filmmakers are commissioned to make a short film in a digital format. All the resulting films have been screened at Locarno and Memories (2007) won a Special Jury Prize. Hong Sangsoo’s Lost in the Mountains depicts Misook’s suffering when she discovers her friend Jin-Young has been secretly sleeping with her lover. In Koma, Naomi Kawase explores Sino-Korean relations and the transmission of traditions through the story of a man returning to the village where he saved a young boy’s life seventy years ago. Lav Diaz’s Butterflies Have No Memories is a portrait of three young Filipinos who, following the closure of the gold mine where they worked, are unemployed and spend their time getting drunk. —http://www.pardo.ch/jahia/Jahia/home/film/cache/bypass?appid=11456_34&appparams=http://www.pardo.ch/jpwacatalog/pardo/film.do%3Fid%3D321257&resetAppSession=true#
A regular on the international festival circuit, Hong Sang-soo is one of Korea’s most highly regarded contemporary directors. His mostly improvised, innovatively constructed films conceal rich layers of meaning beneath deceptively simple surfaces, and reveal a filmmaker with a unique, individual style. A rather notorious figure on the Seoul film scene, Hong has a fondness for alcohol that is almost as legendary as his talent for filmmaking. He’s been known to get familiar with his actors before shooting by taking them on drinking binges, and, for verisimilitude, the many drinking scenes in his films normally include actually drunk performers (who sometimes don’t remember these scenes after they’ve been shot).
Born in 1960, Hong began his film studies at Joongang University in Korea, then moved to the United States, where he received his BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts and his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His debut feature, The Day a… read more
On the repetition-obsessed filmmaker’s wonky sense of space.
Watch the South Korean master’s short film contribution to the 2009 Jeonju Digital Project omnibus.