By Lee Hyo-won
It's that time of the year again when the theater becomes all the more inviting for its array of goose bump-inspiring seasonal movies _ indulge in horror movies and uncanny fantasy flicks to cool off from the heat at the 14th Puchon (Bucheon) International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan).
The monsoon season has never stopped fans from crowding the annual summer festival in Gyeonggi Province, and this year's edition will offer fans 193 works from 42 countries from July 15 to 25.
Asia's largest genre film event continues to be a hotspot for viewing experimental and rare-to-see works but also offers works with mainstream appeal. This year 34 movies will make their world premieres here. "We focused on trying to satisfy both fantasy film buffs and regular moviegoers", said Kim Young-bin, festival director and theater professor at Inha University.
"The Experiment" by Paul Scheuring, who is best known for penning the hit TV series "Prison Break", will make its world premiere at PiFan. Starring award-winning actors Adrien Brody and Forest Whitaker, the psychological thriller is a remake of the 2001 German film "Das Experiment". It is about 26 men who take part in a psychological study to investigate human instincts. They assume roles of either prisoners or guards, but the situation spirals out of control as they start taking their parts too seriously.
The closing film this year is "Death Bell 2: Bloody Camp
", the sequel to the 2008 sleeper hit that competed in the Puchon Choice section of the 12th edition of PiFan. The second installment is also set in a local high school, where the arrival of a trainee teacher (popular TV personality Hwang Jeong-eum
) sets off a series of mysterious deaths. It is directed by Yoo Seon-dong
, the screenwriter of "Arahan
" (2004), which won awards in Deauville, France and at PiFan.
PiFan's official competition section Puchon Choice has invited six Western and six Asian works. Six Korean short films and five from abroad are set to compete in the Puchon Choice Shorts section.
World Fantastic Cinema, a showcase of the latest works from all over the world, will feature pieces from Europe, North America and Asia, while Family Fanta will screen family-friendly movies such as "Aladin" (India, 2009), a modern reinterpretation of the famous story about the genie in a magic lamp.
Thematic sections not to be missed include the "The Millennium Trilogy", featuring all three films based on the bestselling novels by Stieg Larsson. Anime fans can look forward to a showcase of Gundam films. Movies from the 1980s and millennium featuring the superhero robot will make their Korea premiere, and director Yoshiyuki Tomino will join and converse with fans.
Meanwhile as much as the festival is about celebrating special film genres, it will offer a retrospective of 1970s and '80s works by veteran director Lee Doo-yong, who is dubbed "the alchemist of genres".
Aspiring cineastes and fans should tune into Megatalk, which invites directors and actors to speak about the filmmaking process.
For more information about the festival, visit Open the link
or call (032) 345-6313.
Poster for the 14th PiFan. Asia's largest genre film festival will screen 193 works from 42 countries from July 15 to 25.
/ Courtesy of PiFan