Female actors. Female directors. Female producers. From Brigitte Lin Ching Hsia, Moon So-ri and Nansun Shi to Sylvia Chang, Asmara Abigail, Upi(whose My Generation we’ll be seeing on Friday the 27th of April) and the amazing Chedeng and Apple (the Filipino Thelma & Louise who’ll be making their appearance on Saturday the 28th of April), there’s a clear and powerful line of female talent running through the twentieth edition of the Far East Film Festival. As clear and powerful as the resourcefulness, courage and creativity of these amazing women and their amazing films. The soul of the FEFF is female once again, just like the festival’s seventh day – Thursday the 26th of April – which sees the wonderful Sylvia Chang both behind and in front of the camera (in the European premier of unmissable generational drama Love Education), the incredible performance of Kim Hye-soo (more lethal than Beatrix Kiddo in the action noir A Special Lady), the tribute to Marilou DIAZ-ABAYA (in the restored copy of the classic Moral at the Visionario) and the vintage eroticism of the eagerly-awaited ‘pink movie’ double bill (1969’s Blue Film Woman and 1970’s Women Hell Song, these too recently restored and showing at the Visionario).
Love Education is the first film to be directed by Sylvia Chang in mainland China and tackles a theme that has always been close to her heart: that of the differences – and the similarities – between Chinese women of different generations. Sylvia, one of the most beloved and respected Asian actresses, has appeared in over 100 films and has received countless nominations and prizes. In addition to being an actress, since 1981 she has also been a director, directing to date 14 films that have won prizes all over the world. Her work has been the subject of retrospectives at several international festivals, and she is also highly active in supporting the film industry and the young directors of Hong Kong and Taiwan, serving as vice-chairwoman of the HKIFF (from 2011 to 2014) and chairwoman of the Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival (since 2014).
MORI, THE ARTIST’S HABITAT
by OKITA Shuichi (Japan, 2018)
After the triumph of The Mohican Comes Home, Okita’s new film comes to the FEFF: a polite intrusion into the reclusive life of the painter Kumagai.
In the spotlight from 15.00 to 15.35, YIM Soon-rye, director of Little Forest. Next, from 15.40 to 17.00, the unmissable focus on the new popular Filipino cinema.
SMALLER AND SMALLER CIRCLES
by Raya MARTIN (Philippines , 2017)
A powerful urban thriller that lays bare the contradictions of a caste-ridden Filipino society governed by endless hypocrisy.
by KUROSAWA Kiyoshi (Japan, 2017)
An alien invasion is underway, but in a manner beyond human comprehension: the aliens are trying to take over human concepts. If the first concept they appropriate is that of family, though, will the aliens end up feeling ‘love’? Philosophical science fiction from maestro Kurosawa.
NO.1 CHUNG YING STREET
By Derek CHIU (Hong Kong, 2018)
A taboo moment from Hong Kong’s history comes to the big screen. Past and future face to face to show how necessary it is to fight for your ideals.
by TODA Akihiro (Japan, 2018)
A subtle puzzle that, without needing to shout, quietly allows the viewer to grow fond of its characters and be drawn into their lives.
by Sylvia CHANG (China, 2017)
Hui Ying decides to move her father’s tomb from his hometown to a plot next to her mother’s, but her father’s first wife doesn’t approve. And their disagreement ends up turning into a problem for the whole city… From Sylvia CHANG, an absolute master of Asian cinema, comes this splendid female generational drama.
A SPECIAL LADY
by LEE An-gyu (South Korea, 2017)
Hyun-jung has managed to rise to the highest position within her gang in the criminal underworld. But she hides a secret: while in prison, she gave birth to a son. When the truth emerges, the child ends up in her enemies’ sights and she finds herself having to defend him at any cost… Lethal and seductive, Kim Hye-Soo creates a nuanced character: an anti-heroine to put her male counterparts to shame.
by Marilou DIAZ-ABAYA (Philippines, 1982)
by KANG Yoon-sung (South Korea, 2017)
BLUE FILM WOMAN
by MUKAI Kan (Japan, 1969)
WOMEN HELL SONG
by WATANABE Mamoru (Japan, 1970)