As a sort of alternative to the Oscar parties next weekend, here’s a new addition to our program for the spring:
Pan Chan-Wook’s Vengeance Trilogy
Co-Presented by Scarecrow Video
Though he first gathered attention for his comparatively subdued thriller Joint Security Area (2000), an enormous hit in his native South Korea, writer and director Park Chan-Wook has since emerged as a world-cinema master with three visionary, violent, and equally popular revenge sagas. Created between 2002 and 2005, these powerhouse films have together been dubbed by international critics as “The Vengeance Trilogy.” Though each tells a separate, unrelated story,
Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, Oldboy, and Lady Vengeance share Park’s distinctive auteurist touch, identifiable by a unique blend of ironic humor and blood-curdling horror. Comic book stories with elements of classical tragedy, the films feature morally ambiguous but fascinating protagonists who discover the true nature of evil.
Park is the rare contemporary filmmaker who has found a way to innovate with digitally created imagery while maintaining an emotional center. His expressionistic and frequently hallucinatory spaces, as well as his handling of suspense, has earned him comparisons with Alfred Hitchcock. Screening just before the release of the DVD box set, NWFF audiences will be able to see all three of these deliriously beautiful, pulse-pounding thrillers in their original 35mm wide-screen formats.