Monday, October 27, 2008

Hansel and Gretel (Hansel gua Gretel) @ BFI London Film Festival

I want to see this film. Wishing I had the time.

Lee Eun-Soo, a callow young man with an oddly feminine name, is driving along a forest road and on the phone to his pregnant girlfriend when he swerves to avoid roadkill and crashes. Dazed, he's rescued by a mysteriously serene girl who brings him to the "House of Happy Children" in the heart of the forest. He's made very welcome for the night by the owners (an adult couple and their three children), and is only mildly disconcerted that his cellphone doesn't connect and that the housephone is out of order.

Next day, though, when he tries to find his way back to his car, he finds himself trapped in a heavily wooded version of the Bermuda Triangle … Second-time director Yim Phil-Sung (he's a friend of Bong Joon-Ho and played a small role in The Host) delivers a grown-up re-reading of fairy tales to rival Angela Carter's, complete with childish tantrums that have demonic consequences. There are several horror-movie shocks, but the film's great strength is Yim's ability to render conceptual mysteries in sinister, dream-like images. Sudden snowfall has never been creepier.
Tony Rayns

This film is nominated for the FIPRESCI Critics Award

Directed by:Yim Phil-Sung
Written by:Kim Min-Sook, Yim Phil-Sung
Cast:Chun Jeong-Myoung, Eun Won-Jae, Shim Eun-Kyoung
Country:South Korea
Running time:116min

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