2018.8.10 Now Playing
Drama / 137 / Korean / Aug. 8
Set in 1993, this espionage thriller opens in the midst of high tensions between the two Koreas due to North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons.
Park Seok-young (Hwang Jung-min) is a former South Korean military officer recruited by the National Intelligence Service to infiltrate a North Korean facility under the code name Heuk Geum-seong.
Disguised as a South Korean businessman working on a collaborative project with North Korea, Park meets Ra Myeong-un (Lee Sung-min), a high-ranking North Korean, in Beijing. After years of hard work, Park manages to build a good reputation and earn the trust of the North Korean authorities, while constantly reporting on the North’s situations to Director Choi Hak-seong (Cho Jin-woong) of the National Intelligence Service. All seems to go well until 1997, when Park discovers that there is a secret deal going on between two high-ranking officials from both Koreas to interfere with the upcoming South Korean presidential election.
Musical / 114 / English / Aug. 8
Set five years after the 2008 film “Mamma Mia!,” the sequel tells the story of Donna’s (Meryl Streep) arrival on the Greek island of Kalokairi and her meetings with her daughter Sophie’s (Amanda Seyfried) three possible fathers: Harry (Colin Firth) from London, the wild adventurer Bill (Stellan Skarsgard) and Sam (Pierce Brosnan) from New York.
After her mother’s death a year earlier, the film opens with a pregnant Sophie busily preparing for the grand reopening of Donna’s hotel on Kalokairi. To her dismay, two of her possible fathers, Harry and Bill, are unable to make it to the reopening. On top of this, she is struggling in her relationship with her boyfriend, Sky (Dominic Cooper), who is in New York.
The film then flashes back to 1979, featuring a young Donna (Lily James) leaving for a trip through Europe after graduating from the prestigious Oxford University. On her journey, she encounters Harry, Bill and Sam and falls in love with one of them.
Amid the bustle, Sophie reflects on her mother’s journey and begins to understand the hardships she went through.
Hotel Transylvania 3: A Monster Vacation (G)
Animation, comedy, family, fantasy / 97 / English / Aug. 8
Directed by Genndy Tartakovsky, the animated film opens in 1897, with Dracula (Adam Sandler) taking a train ride with his friends: Frank (Kevin James), Griffin (David Spade), Murray (Keegan-Michael Key) and Wayne (Steve Buscemi). Suddenly, the monster-hating Abraham Van Helsing (Jim Gaffigan) bursts in and announces that monsters are on the train, causing a commotion.
While the rest of the monsters successfully escape, Dracula is left alone with Abraham, who desperately tries to kill him. Dracula manages to flee, much to the dismay of Abraham.
In the present day, Mavis (Selena Gomez) surprises her dad, Dracula, with a family voyage on a luxurious monster cruise ship. Along with Mavis and his many monster friends, Dracula sails aboard on the dream vacation.
On the ship, the monsters are having a blast, fully enjoying the recreational activities, including monster volleyball and moon tans. But trouble arises when Dracula falls in love with the ship’s captain, Ericka (Kathryn Hahn), who possesses a dangerous secret.
Thriller, drama, crime / 122 / English / Aug. 9
This is a re-release of a film written and directed by Ethan Coen and Joel Coen that was released in Korea in 2008.
Based on Cormac McCarthy’s 2005 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, this film begins with a drug deal that goes horribly wrong.
Set in a small Texas border town in 1980, the film introduces Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin), a welder and hunter, coming across a dying drug dealer, numerous bloody bodies of drug runners, $2.4 million in cash and a truck full of heroin. Tempted by the huge sum of money, Llewelyn decides to keep the money for himself and does not report the incident to the police.
Unaware of the consequences of his discovery, Llewelyn is soon pursued by a killer named Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem). To claim this money, the calculated Anton ruthlessly murders every bystander and rival who stands in his way. Meanwhile, Sheriff Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones) begins to investigate the case and realizes that it is more complicated than he expected.
Along with many other awards, this film won four Oscars, including Best Picture at the 2008 Academy Awards.
Fantasy, drama / 141 / Korean / Aug. 1
Directed by Kim Yong-hwa, this Korean fantasy action film is a follow-up to the 2017 “Along with the Gods: The Two Worlds,” and tells the story of relationship between the three grim reapers, Kangrim (Ha Jung-woo), Haewonmak (Ju Ji-hoon) and Deokchoon (Kim Hyang-gi), who were humans some 1,000 years ago.
The three grim reapers have received a promise from the king of the underworld (Lee Jung-jae) that if they are able to reincarnate 49 righteous humans in 1,000 years, they will also be reincarnated as humans. They are close to their goal, with only one person remaining.
Kangrim chooses Su-hong (Kim Dong-wook), the brother of the firefighter Ja-hong from the first film, as their last person to reincarnate.
In the first film, Su-hong was a lemure, restless spirits who are usually unable to go through the seven trials to become reincarnated. Unexpectedly, the king of the underworld grants the grim reapers permission, under the condition that they bring the senior elder Heo Chun-sam (Nam Il-woo) to the afterlife before Su-hong’s trials end.
The reason that previous grim reapers couldn’t summon Chun-sam was due to the presence of a tender-hearted and muscular god, Seongju (Ma Dong-seok), who protects the elder and his grandson. While Haewonmak and Deokchoon are sent off to the mortal realm, Kangrim defends Su-hong through all seven trials.
Sci-fi, action / 138 / Korean / July 25
Set in 2029, this sci-fi action movie opens with the two Koreas announcing a five-year plan to reunify the peninsula.
The journey toward reunification is rough, with the public heavily divided on the matter. The appearance of Sect, an armed antigovernment group that opposes reunification, prompts the president to create a special police force endowed with tremendous political power.
This decision is not welcomed by the National Intelligence Service, which fears its political influence will diminish. The spy agency hatches a plan to annihilate the special police unit, sparking a deadly battle between two powerful institutions.
In the middle of this conflict are Im Joong-gyeong (Gang Dong-won), an elite member of the special police force, and Han Sang-woo (Kim Moo-yul), who works for the National Intelligence Service. Rumors circulate that the special police unit is creating a secret organization called Illang, otherwise known as the Wolf Brigade.
Currently, Joong-gyeong becomes conflicted as his mission turns him into an emotionless beast and affects his feelings toward a mysterious woman named Lee Yun-hee (Han Hyo-joo).
Directed by Kim Jee-woon, this film is an adaptation of the famous 1999 Japanese animated film “Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade.”