Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Top 10 Korean Contenders for Cannes 2015

By Pierce Conran

Guessing what films might go to Cannes is a bit of a fool's errand, but as those go, it can be a fun one. Korea doesn't always get features selected (though it has its fair share of award wins) yet, in the months leading up to the fest, people in the local industry often like to speculate about what might make the lineup.

Around this period, any time I meet with a colleague or someone in the industry, there is a very good chance we will wind up on this topic, particularly if natural conversation has run dry (that can happen pretty quickly with me).

Compared to the last few years, it looks like there are a few more options for Korean films appearing at Cannes in 2015, though sadly it wouldn't be a surprise if none wind up on the program. Such an occurrence would lead some locals to decry the poor state of the industry but Cannes is such a small sample of global cinema that I don't think it's a cause for concern. The festival skews towards Hollywood and European fare, and many of the promising Korean titles appear towards the end of the year, aiming for Venice, Toronto and Busan. That said, the mid-budget auteur features, which were once referred to as 'well-made films', are not being made the way they used to.

The following list is purely speculative and just a bit of fun. I have no idea what'll wind up in Cannes and of course a number of films I've never heard of will probably be submitted. I've ranked the films by likelihood, but unless your name ends in Dardenne or Haneke, there's no such thing as a good chance of getting into Cannes. This only covers features, but applies to all of Cannes' lineups, including the Critics' Week and Directors' Fortnight sidebars.

That said, I hope you enjoy the list and please share your opinions as well!

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