2014.12.19 Now Playing
The Battle of the Five Armies (12)
Adventure/ 144/ English
The epic “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, directed by Peter Jackson, comes to a close with the release of the story’s prequel, “The Hobbit.”
The film is the finale of the adventures involving Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), Thorin (Richard Armitage) and the dwarves.
When they reclaim their hometown from the dragon Smaug, they accidently unleash its disastrous power, wherein it begins attacking the innocent.
But Thorin is obsessed with protecting his reclaimed treasure, which threatens his friendship with Bilbo, who tries to persuade his friend to be sensible.
Soon the hobbits must make a dicey decision against the greatest danger that lies ahead: Sauron, who has set his Orc legion in motion in order to attack the Lonely Mountain.
As the conflict escalates and darkness descends, dwarves, elves and men must choose whether to fight together or ultimately fall.
Jackson went from obscure movie-maker to world-famous director with his “Lord of the Rings.”
The final installment, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” completes the puzzle.
Drama/ 126/ Korean
“Ode to My Father” was originally titled “Kukjae Market” (International Market), after the venue in Busan, where it has been a landmark since the 1950-53 Korean War.
The movie itself details the lives of war survivors and how they adjust to the modernizing world.
Duck-soo (Hwang Jung-min) is a refugee who loses his father during the war. His remaining family - his mother and siblings - live with his aunt’s family at Kukjae Market in Busan, where he must work instead of attending school.
As breadwinner, he leaves for Germany to earn a higher wage working as a miner.
There, his life seems to look up when he meets Young-ja (Kim Yoon-jin), who works as a nurse. The two eventually marry, though Duck-soo soon finds himself enlisting in the military to earn money for his sister’s wedding.
Back in Busan, Young-ja is forced to work alone at Kukjae Market. After Duck-soo returns to Korea, he must seek out his family, who have all gone in separate directions because of the war.
The film vividly depicts modern Korean history, tracing Duk-soo’s life from the Korean War to present day. It is a touching tale about family and the ties that bind.
Drama/ 138/ French
Xavier Dolan, who made a spectacular debut with his first film “I Killed My Mother,” returns with “Mommy,” a 2014 Jury Prize-winning movie.
The films tells the story of Diane
Despres (Anne Dorval), a widowed mother who lives with her only son Steve (Antoine-Olivier Pilon).
Steve loves his mother dearly, but is a troubled boy with violent tendencies. For Diane, home-schooling the teen becomes hectic as a working single mother.
But support eventually comes in the form of Kyla (Suzanne Clement), their neighbor, who develops a close bond with Diane.
Together, the three of them find their value and realize how being a family makes life bearable and more joyful.
Dolan purposely creates an surreal atmosphere in order for each character to shine through.
Drama/ 28/ Korean
Director Kang Jae-kyu of “TaeGukGi: Brotherhood of War” takes the spotlight with his newest film, starring Moon Chae-won and Go soo of “Love 911.”
“Awaiting” is Kang’s first project in three years - a dramatic story that takes its audience through a range of emotions.
“It won’t take long. I’ll be back on Saturday,” Min-woo (Go soo) tells his wife Yeon-hee (Moon Chae-won) just before leaving her.
And just like that, her story unfolds over a surprisingly short 28 minutes. But the film’s length is intentional, and one of the points that Kang wishes to emphasize. In less than half an hour, the filmmaker takes us into the protagonists mind, chronicling her worry, anxiety and general fear as she awaits her husband’s return.
In her old age, despite progressing Alzheimer’s, Yeon-hee never gives up hope that her husband will one day return.
Only at the end does the audience learn the reason for Min-woo’s disappearance.
Romance/ 123/ English
Produced by British filmmaking company Working Title Films, which has a loyal group of fans in Korea, “The Theory of Everything” serves as a biopic about theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking.
But in reality, it tilts more toward a soul-healing romance about the genius astrophysicist and his first wife, Jane Wilde (Felicity Jones).
The story unfolds in 1963, when Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) is a graduate student in cosmology at Cambridge University.
There, he meets Jane, who is studying art. They fall in love and a charming yet awkward courtship ensues.
However, misfortune comes with the signs of Lou Gehrig’s disease. As Hawkin’s illness progresses, the symptoms quickly begin to affect his life. He is given no more than two years to live, yet Jane marries him anyway and they continue on with their lives.
The film illustrates the beginnings of the disease and how his productivity is intimately linked to Jane, who has always been there for him, and her unconditional care.
Change Zoororing (All)
Animation/ 75/ Korean
This animated feature starts out in a town in which various animals live alongside people and even gives out a prize for the best animal companion.
But when all the animals disappear after the competition, protagonists KiKi, Ruru, Keunyi, Mingming and Minu are forced to form the Animal Detectives to find the criminal who has abducted their furry friends.
With their specially designed compact, created by a geneticist, the group is able to transform themselves into any animal they please.
Their search, detailed mostly in the beginning act, is reminiscent of the animated Japanese detective series “Detective Conan.”
But “Change Zoororing” focuses on the adventures of three different groups - the Animalian tribe, a cat known as Doongyang-yi and the Animal Detectives - and their efforts to locate the missing. The film also touches on how the three groups, all with different agendas, must work together and compromise.
The “Zoororing” series aired from 2010 to 2012 on KBS, where it gained a large following. This is the first time the story has made its way to the silver screen.
The film is likely to be a hit with young children, especially those who are fans of the TV series.
Some of the characters from the small screen also make appearances in the movie.