2018.11.15 Now Playing
Fantasy, Adventure / 134 / English / Nov. 14
The follow-up to 2016’s “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” again directed by David Yates, features the adventures of Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), Jacob Kowalski (Dan Folger), Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston) and her sister Queenie (Alison Sudol), as they fight an evil force creeping into the wizarding world.
After the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp) escapes the custody of the Magical Congress of the United States of America, he attempts to build a loyal following to destroy the peace that existed between magical beings and ordinary people.
The four main characters are joined by a young Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law), who calls upon his former student Newt to help curb Grindelwald’s plan.
Korean actress Claudia Kim, or Kim Soo-hyun, who has played a number of supporting roles in Hollywood movies, including “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” (2015) plays the role of Nagini, a woman who transforms into Voldemort’s faithful pet serpent.
The decision to cast Kim as a character who goes on to become a slave to the franchise’s chief villain was met with controversy, with some calling the casting “racist.”
Drama / 105 / Korean / Nov. 14
Young-min (Lee Bum-soo) is a Korean-born economist who lived in Cold War-era West Berlin until he was one day tricked into moving to North Korea, believing it was for the sake of himself and his family. He was then forced to work as a spy.
Upon realizing this, Young-min attempts to run away from North Korea. He seeks help from immigration officers at an airport in Copenhagen. He is then turned over to German authorities and is briefly detained.
Then, he and his eldest daughter are accidently separated from his wife and younger daughter, thus kicking off a journey to recover his family.
Directed by a rookie filmmaker Noh Gyu-yeop, the film was inspired by Oh Gil-nam’s true story. It co-stars Yeon Woo-jin and Park Ju-mi.
Animation / 109 / Japanese / Nov. 15
Based on Yoru Sumino’s popular novel, the story begins with an unnamed high school boy who is bothered by a girl, named Sakura, in their high school library. The latter is fascinated by a supposed Japanese custom of eating the body part of a lover to cure a disease afflicting the same body part.
Sakura is a popular and cheerful girl at school, while the male protagonist is a withdrawn loner who spends his time working at the school library because he believes that reading books is a better passtime than being with people.
One day, he accidentally discovers a diary, which turns out to be Sakura’s. Through reading the diary, the boy discovers that Sakura has a terminal pancreatic illness and that she only has a few months to live. This secret, which Sakura keeps from her friends, rapidly brings the two closer.
The live-action film was screened at the Busan International Film Festival last year.
The Villagers (15)
Action, Thriller / 99 / Korean / Nov. 7
Gi-cheol (Ma Dong-seok) is a temporary physical education teacher who has been hired at a high school in a small, sequestered town. As soon as he arrives, he senses that there’s something strange about the town. His suspicion grows upon seeing how calm people are after a girl goes missing from his high school. He attempts to dig into the case, but keeps getting told by people, including the police, to mind his own business.
The missing girl’s only friend was Yu-jin (Kim Sae-ron). Believing that her friend was kidnapped, she also gets herself involved in the case. Working with Gi-cheol, the two realize that someone is trying to erase traces of the missing girl.
Directed by Lim Jin-sun, the movie also stars Lee Sang-yeob and Jin Sun-kyu.
Ode to the Goose (15)
Drama / 121 / Korean / Nov. 8
A former poet named Yun-yeong (Park Hae-il) is very happy that his former crush Song-hyeon (Moon So-ri), the ex-wife of his friend, is single once again. One day after drinking, the pair travels to Gunsan, North Jeolla.
After having some drinks at a local diner, the two check into a Japanese style guest house to stay a night. They are not the only ones at the accommodation, since the owner of the bed and breakfast, an unnamed man played by Jung Jin-young, has an autistic daughter (Park So-dam), who does not feel comfortable around strangers.
There, Song-hyeon shows an interest in the widowed owner, who is also an amateur photographer that spends hours working on photos in his darkroom. This clearly makes Yun-yeong feel uncomfortable and jealous.
The film is directed by Zhang Lu, who was behind “A Quiet Drama,” which opened the 2016 Busan International Film Festival.
Horror, Mystery / 94 / Korean / Nov. 8
A remake of the 1986 historical horror masterpiece “Woman’s Wail,” this period thriller, set in the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910), follows a naive girl named Ok-bun (Son Na-eun) who happens to stumble into a cursed house, where a series of mysterious killings occur.
There, the girl encounters Lady Shin (Seo Young-hee), who lays out a set of unexplainable house rules that Ok-bun needs to follow during her stay. These rules are intended to prevent the girl from finding out the truths behind the house’s paranormal activities. But they don’t stop Ok-bun from investigating.
Directed by Yoo Young-seon of “The Wicked” (2014), the film also stars Lee Tae-ri and Park Min-ji.
The Children Gone to Poland (G)
Documentary / 79 / Korean / Oct. 31
Directed by actor-turned-director Choo Sang-mee, “The Children Gone to Poland” explores the little-known story of North Korean war orphans who were sent to Poland during the 1950-53 Korean War.
At the time, North Korea’s leader Kim Il Sung sent thousands of orphans to many of the country’s communist allies, including the Soviet Union and Hungary, asking that they take care of them. In 1953, around 1,200 orphans were sent to the small village of Plakowice in Poland, where they lived in a former hospital for the next six years under the attentive care of Polish teachers and caregivers.
However, tragedy strikes when the children are later ordered to return and become a part of North Korea’s post-war reconstruction efforts.
Drama / 134 / English / Oct. 31
A biopic about the British rock band Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody” pays particular attention to the life of Freddie Mercury, the band’s lead singer.
The film starts with the band’s performance at the Live Aid concert held at Wembley Stadium in 1985. It then goes back to 1970, and shows a younger Freddie.
Led by Freddie (Rami Malek), the band was also composed of his friends Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon, as well as his supportive girlfriend Mary Austin. The movie depicts Queen’s rise to fame and popularity following the release of their hit songs.
But problems begin to arise as Freddie, who struggles with revealing his homosexuality, battles with drug use and fame as well as an AIDS diagnosis, which threatens the band.