The organizers of the Montreal International Fantasia Film Festival have released their second wave of film screenings. As usual here are some of the East Asian films announced. On July 7, Fantasia will release their full schedule. This year’s festival runs from July 14-August 4.
International Premiere: Takeshi Kitano’s RYUZO AND THE SEVEN HENCHMEN
Coming immediately after his OUTRAGE saga, Takeshi Kitano’s hilarious crime story stars screen legend Tatsuya Fuji (IN THE REALM OF THE SENSES) as a retired yakuza who realizes that the only way to break the monotony of his daily life by reuniting with his old gang. This is a funny and heartfelt meditation on growing old that only the master of Japanese cinema could deliver.
Centerpiece Presentation: Ringo Lam’s WILD CITY
It’s been a long wait, but the dark god of hard-edged Hong Kong cinema is back. Alongside John Woo and Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam was key in defining the spirit of HK film in the late ’80s. Now, after a near-decade hiatus from feature filmmaking, he’s ready to show the world once again what happens when high-octane action and a hard-knock social conscience collide. Canadian Premiere.
HARUKO’S PARANORMAL LABORATORY (Japan; dir: Lisa Takeba)
One day, as Haruko is zapping, her television unexpectedly transforms into a beautiful, shirtless, TV-headed stud! Welcome to HARUKO’S PARANORMAL LABORATORY, a personal and inventive vision signaling Takeba as Japan’s new Queen of Quirk. Official Selection: Rotterdam, Hong Kong, Yubari. Canadian Premiere.
JU-ON: THE FINAL CURSE (Japan; dir: Masayuki Ochiai)
Directly following last year’s JU-ON: THE BEGINNING OF THE END, this harrowing conclusion of director Masayuki Ochiai’s reboot of J-horror’s most beloved franchise generously brings all the goodies expected by fans. Prepare to squirm, screech and shudder, because Toshio and Kayoko are determined to finish business with panache. International Premiere.
THE NUTCRACKER 3D (Japan; dir: Sebastian Masuda)
Sanrio’s 1979 stop-motion holiday movie, remixed, revamped, and rebooted by Sebastian Masuda, Harajuku’s “Godfather of kawaii.” A deliciously psychedelic pop-art phantasmagoria of super-sweet, candy-colored cool. North American premiere.
ON THE WHITE PLANET (South Korea; dir: Hur Bum-wook)
A brooding existential nightmare unfolding within a densely detailed landscape of surreal biological monstrosity, animator Hur Bum-wook’s award-winning debut feature is an intense and troubling tale of violence and vulnerability, hope and despair. Canadian premiere.
THE ROYAL TAILOR (South Korea; dir: Lee Won-suk)
A potent period drama embroidered with wit and wise insights, THE ROYAL TAILOR has its high-spirited mirth and heartbreaking tragedy sewn together masterfully. A great script, a great cast—and a truly wondrous array of magnificent garments! Official Selection: Udine, NYAFF. Canadian Premiere.
SOCIALPHOBIA (South Korea; dir: Hong Seok-jae)
Social media has scary consequences for two police-tech students and an Internet troll in this masterfully executed first feature film by Hong Seok-jae. Filled with stunning twists and keenly constructed characters, SOCIALPHOBIA ranks among the best independent Korean films in recent years. Winner of the NETPAC and DGK Awards at the Busan Film Festival. Quebec Premiere.
WONDERFUL WORLD END (Japan; dir: Daigo Matsui)
With films like SWEET POOLSIDE, director Daigo Matsui proved himself a leading voice in coming-of-age films with lucid and accurate portrayals of Japanese youth and a taste for bizarre creativity. So when he steers his gaze to social media’s impact on two serial bloggers, expect to be disturbed, moved and amazed. Selected in Generation 14+ Section at Berlinale. Canadian Premiere.
For the full list of films announced for the second wave, visit Fangoria’s page.
The following were previously announced in their first wave.
BIG MATCH (South Korea; Dir: Choi Ho): Lee Jeong-jae (THE THIEVES), Shin Ha-kyun (THIRST) and K-Pop star BoA enters a dangerous death game in this high-octane action comedy where a Mixed Martial Arts fighter must play a deadly urban chess confrontation created by a Machiavellian mastermind. Canadian Premiere.
FATAL FRAME (Japan; Dir: Mari Asato): A deadly curse hits a Gothic-style convent in this brilliant atmospheric adaptation of the hit horror video game FATAL FRAME, where flawless storytelling and character development, a creepy ambiance taking advantage of every inch of its location and a haunting music score bring the audience back to the golden age of J-horror. Official Selection: Stockholm International Film Festival. North American Premiere.
THE GOLDEN CANE WARRIOR (Indonesia; Dir: Ifa Isfansyah): Aging female warrior Cempaka is the most respected fighter in the Golden Cane clan, but she must now find a successor among her disciples. Coming on the heels of the wildly popular THE RAID series, this flawlessly executed epic actioner by Ifa Isfansyah is here to confirm Indonesia’s place in the leading nations of martial arts cinema. Canadian Premiere.
LA LA LA AT ROCK BOTTOM (Japan; Dir: Nobuhiro Yamashita): Nobuhiro Yamashita, director of the contemporary classic LINDA LINDA LINDA, is back in musical-comedy/drama territory with a fighter attitude! Rising superstar Fumi Nikaido (WHY DON’T YOU PLAY IN HELL?) and J-Pop sensation Subaru Shibutani, member of Kanjani Eight, shine in this remarkable underdog tale. Official Selection: Rotterdam International Film Festival. Canadian Premiere.