Coming in the midst of an unprecedented political scandal and benefitting from a prime Lunar New Year holiday release date, prosecutor drama The King aims to be the first Korean hit of the year. A glossily entertaining saga with big stars, timely corruption themes and a boatload of Scorsese references, this fourth film from director Han Jae-rim aims for greatness until a finale that ultimately buckles under the weight of its own political ambitions.
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Tuesday, January 24, 2017
By Pierce Conran
After a stellar 2016, many are keen to see if Korean cinema can muster the same quality lineup in 2017. However, though I've highlighted a few more titles than last year, I'll say right now that this year is unlikely to rival the last, when we were treated to terrific new outings from Kim Jee-woon, Park Chan-woo and Na Hong-jin, among many other outstanding new discoveries.
That said, many interesting films are on the way and a few incoming trends are noticeable. This list is very subjective and omits many films that I'm personally not excited about or may not have heard of. As always, many of the year's best films will surely be independent productions that will remain off my radar until they secure festival premieres.
Some of you may have heard that Lee Chang-dong is making a new film, but I'm sorry to inform you that due to a large production snag, that project that may never come to life, so has been omitted here.
Enjoy and please let me know if I've missed anything and what you're most looking forward to this year!