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Thread: NY ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL July 15-28, 2022

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    NY ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL July 15-28, 2022

    New York Asian Film Festival's 21th Edition Includes 60+ new and classic titles all presented in person

    FESTIVAL COVERAGE THREAD

    FILM AT LINCOLN CENTER PAGE

    SCREEN DAILY FESTIVAL INTRO


    OPENING NIGHT FILM FAST & FEEL LOVE (NAWAPOL THAMRONGRATTANARIT)

    This year's New York Asian Film Festival is co-presented by the New York Asian Film Foundation and Film at Lincoln Center, and takes place from July 15–28, 2022 at FLC’s Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street), and on July 23 and July 29–31 at Asia Society (725 Park Avenue). It is curated by Executive Director Samuel Jamier, Associate Director Claire Marty, and programmers David Wilentz, Karen Severns, Koichi Mori, and Jenny Lin. [Note: I am trying to find out how come the publicity releases are calling this the "20th anniversary edition" when 2020 was the 19th edition and 2021 was the 20th edition.]

    CHINA (co-presented with CineCina Film Festival)
    – All the Crows in the World | dir. Tang Yi, Hong Kong 2021 | New York Premiere
    – Before Next Spring | dir. Li Gen, China, 2021 | North American Premiere
    – Fire on the Plain | dir. Zhang Ji, China, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – Manchurian Tiger | dir. Geng Jun, China, 2021 | US Premiere
    – Ripples of Life | dir. Wei Shujun, China, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – Virgin Blue | Niu Xiaoyu, China, 2021 | New York Premiere
    - Before Next Spring © Huace Film & TV (Tianjin) Co., Ltd.


    HAPPY TOGETHER

    HONG KONG (presented with Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York)
    – Dream Home | dir. Pang Ho-cheung, Hong Kong, 2010
    – Far Far Away | dir. Amos Why, Hong Kong, 2021 | North American Premiere
    – Finding Bliss: Fire and Ice—The Director's Cut | dir. Kim Chan, Dee Lam, Hong Kong, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Full Strike | dir. Derek Kwok, Henri Wong, Hong Kong, 2015
    – Happy Together | dir. Wong Kar Wai, Hong Kong, 1997 | Outdoor at Hearst Plaza
    – Kung Fu Hustle | dir. Stephen Chow, Hong Kong, 2004
    – Legendary in Action! | dir. Justin Cheung, Li Ho, Hong Kong, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Mama's Affair | dir. Kearen Pang, Hong Kong, 2022 | New York Premiere
    – Overheard | dir. Alan Mak, Felix Chong, Hong Kong, 2009
    – Running on Karma | dir. Johnnie To, Wai Ka-Fai, Hong Kong, 2003
    – Table for Six | dir. Sunny Chan, Hong Kong, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – The Eye | dir. Pang Brothers, Hong Kong, Singapore, 2002
    – We Are Family | dir. Benny Lau, Hong Kong, 2022 | World Premiere
    - Far Far Away ©Dot 2 Dot Production Limited


    SHIN ULTRAMAN (SHIN HIGUCHI)

    JAPAN (presented with Japan World Exposition 1970 Commemorative Fund)
    – Angry Son | dir. Kasho Iizuka, Japan, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Broken Commandment | dir. Kazuo Maeda, Japan, 2022 | International Premiere
    – Grown-ups | dir. Takuya Kato, Japan, 2022 | International Premiere
    – Intimate Stranger | dir. Mayu Nakamura, Japan, 2021 | North American Premiere
    – Lesson in Murder | dir. Kazuya Shiraishi, Japan, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Offbeat Cops | dir. Eiji Uchida, Japan, 2022 | World Premiere
    – Ox-Head Village | dir. Takashi Shimizu, Japan, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Ribbon | dir. Non, Japan, 2022 | East Coast Premiere
    – Shin Ultraman | dir. Shinji Higuchi, Japan, 2022 | US Premiere

    MONGOLIA
    – The Sales Girl | dir. Janchivdorj Sengedorj, Mongolia, 2021 | North American Premiere

    SOUTHEAST ASIA
    – Big Night! | dir. Jun Robles Lana, Philippines, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – Fast & Feel Love | dir. Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, Thailand, 2022 | International Premiere


    CONFESSION (YOON JONG-SEOK)

    SOUTH KOREA (co-presented with Korean Cultural Center New York)
    – Confession | dir. Yoon Jong-seok, South Korea, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – I Am More | dir. Lee Il-ha, South Korea, 2021 | North American Premiere
    – Next Door | dir. Yeom Ji-ho, South Korea, 2022 | US Premiere
    – Perhaps Love | dir. Cho Eun-ji, South Korea, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Stellar: A Magical Ride | dir. Kwon Soo-kyung, South Korea, 2022 | International Premiere
    – The Girl on a Bulldozer | dir. Park Ri-woong, South Korea, 2022 | New York Premiere
    – The Killer | dir. Choi Jae-hun, South Korea, 2022 | Special Screening
    - Stellar: A Magical Ride ©Daydream Entertainment & CJ ENM

    TAIWAN (with the support of Taipei Cultural Center in New York)
    – Mama Boy | dir. Arvin Chen, Taiwan, 2022 | North American Premiere
    – Terrorizers | dir. Ho Wi Ding, Taiwan, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – The Funeral | dir. Dan-Quei Shen, Taiwan, 2022 | International Premiere

    ASIAN AMERICAN
    – Dealing with Dad | dir. Tom Huang, USA, 2022 | East Coast Premiere
    - Dealing with Dad


    TANK FAIRY (ERICH RETTSTADT)

    NARRATIVE SHORTS SHOWCASE By emerging filmmakers
    – Ateh | dir. Kristie Ko, Hong Kong, 2021 | North American Premiere
    – Black Goat | dir. Tang Yi, USA/Nepal, 2019 | New York Premiere
    – Double Happiness | dir. Scarlett Li, China/USA, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – Honekami (A Bite of Bone) | dir. Honami Yano, Japan, 2021
    – Natsuko | dir. Shuna Iijima, Japan, 2020
    – S.Q.A.G. (Short Quiet Asian Girl) | dir. Benedict Chiu, USA, 2022 | World Premiere
    – Tank Fairy | dir. Erich Rettstadt, Taiwan/USA, 2021 | New York Premiere
    – The Sea Between Us | dir. Yuga J Vardhan, Singapore, 2021
    – Visitors | dir. Kenichi Ugana, Japan, 2021
    – Wax and Wane | dir. Beidi Wang, USA, 2022 | New York Premiere

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-12-2022 at 07:38 PM.

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    BEFORE NEXT SPRING (LI GEN)

    New York Asian Film Festival 2022 preview

    New York, NY (June 16, 2022) – On July 15, 2022, the New York Asian Film Foundation and Film at Lincoln Center will kick off the 20th anniversary edition of the New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF) with a full return to big-screen viewing. Following a fully virtual 2020 edition and a hybrid 2021 edition, NYAFF is delighted to present this year’s 60+ new and classic titles fully in person from July 15–31, 2022.

    NYAFF remains fully committed to increasing exposure of Asian representation on screen and providing opportunities for audiences of all communities to experience the diversity and brilliance of Asian and Asian American cinema. The 20th anniversary lineup will include world, international, North American, U.S., and New York premieres, showcasing the most exhilarating action, comedy, drama, thriller, romance, horror, and art-house films.

    “We’re thrilled to be back fully in person after two years, the best and only way to really have a festival, in my view,” said Samuel Jamier, Executive Director of NYAFF and President of the New York Asian Film Foundation. “We’ve been really impressed with the quality and diversity of films made during the trying times of the pandemic, and we’re especially excited that we can once again welcome guests from all over Asia to the stage at FLC, giving them the spotlight they deserve. We look forward to celebrating NYAFF’s 20th anniversary and 20 years of discovering films from half a world away, a region now universally celebrated for its great filmmaking and storytelling, with some of today’s most talented and acclaimed stars and renowned filmmakers.”

    The previously announced NYAFF Opening Film is the international premiere of the propulsively paced Thai romcom Fast & Feel Love, directed by Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit (Heart Attack, NYAFF 2016). The director will be joined at Film at Lincoln Center on opening night by his leading actress, Urassaya “Yaya” Sperbund, who will be honored on stage with the Screen International Rising Star Award. The Thai-Norwegian actress, already an established star in the region, is known for roles in popular TV series and films, such as Witthaya Thongyooyong’s Brother of the Year.

    In Fast & Feel Love, Sperbund brilliantly plays the supportive girlfriend of a world champion sport stacker who only has time for his game. When she finally comes to her senses and dumps him, he must learn basic adulting skills to find a way to win her back. Stacking is a genderless, ageless, border-free sport, and the exuberant film is nearly as fast-moving as its sport-stacking protagonist.

    NYAFF’s South Korean lineup, presented with the support of the Korean Cultural Center New York (KCCNY) and as bold and vibrant as ever, will showcase, among many others, Confession from Yoon Jong-seok, a labyrinthine tale of betrayal and intrigue anchored by tension-charged performances from So Ji-sub (NYAFF 2009 Rising Star Asia honoree) and Kim Yun-jin; Yeom Ji-ho’s taut comedic thriller Next Door, in which a would-be police cadet unexpectedly finds himself embroiled in a real-life crime-fighting test; and the illuminating LGBTQ documentary I Am More by Lee Il-ha (Counters, NYAFF 2018) following the captivating journey of glamorous drag queen and transgender trailblazer More, who will join us for the film’s North American debut. This year marks 140 years of friendship between Korea and the United States, and KCCNY will be hosting exciting events to celebrate this meaningful history of cultural exchange. Additional lineup announcements from South Korea will follow: NYAFF is bringing its largest number of guest filmmakers ever.

    NYAFF’s Japanese lineup, supported by the Japan World Exposition 1970 Commemorative Fund, is led off by the U.S. premiere of megahit Shin Ultraman, a shiny new reimagining of the most successful tokusatsu-versus-kaiju series of all time from creative titans Hideaki Anno (writer-producer) and Shinji Higuchi (director), the power duo behind Shin Godzilla, with the director present at FLC. Other highlights include NYAFF regular Kazuya Shiraishi’s Lesson in Murder, a seductive serial-killer thriller that is rife with shocking twists and nauseating turns; the delightful debut theatrical feature of actress Non (star of Hold Me Back, NYAFF 2021), Ribbon, an intensely personal vision of an artist trying to reclaim her identity and her future promise amid the pandemic; Broken Commandment, the immensely moving new adaptation of Toson Shimazaki’s classic novel about a Burakumin school teacher who must find the courage to fight for human rights, or give up everything; Takuya Kato’s Grown-ups, a sharply observed dissection of a volatile relationship between two college students that may leave some viewers gasping for air; and the new narrative feature from New York-schooled documentarian Mayu Nakamura, Intimate Stranger, a disturbing psychological chiller about a single mother’s search for her missing son.

    NYAFF’s recently announced partnership with the CineCina Film Festival (CCFF) is expected to allow both partners to reach a wider audience, promote enriched cultural exchange, and provide unprecedented access to the latest releases from mainland China. The inaugural CineCina Selections will include Zhang Ji’s riveting romantic dark thriller Fire on the Plain, in which a cop working a serial-killer cold case finds clues that pull him back into his fraught past; Geng Jun’s deadpan dramedy Manchurian Tiger, which narrates the revenge of parents-to-be during a freezing winter in Northeast China; Niu Xiaoyu’s often surreal Virgin Blue; and Wei Shujun’s po-faced mockumentary about filmmaking, Ripples of Life, in which a crew constantly has to rewrite their script after arriving on location.

    NYAFF’s Taiwan lineup features some of the most striking new films of the past year, including the international premiere of Dan-Quei Shen’s The Funeral, a superlative horror film that follows a struggling single mother who returns to her rural family manse when her grandfather dies. Other highlights are Mama Boy from Arvin Chen (a NYAFF Uncaged competition juror in 2020), which stars heartthrob Kai Ko as the titular young man who falls for singer-actress Vivian Hsu and finally comes of age at 29; and Terrorizers from Ho Wi Ding (100, NYAFF 2012), with Austin Lin (iWeirDO, NYAFF 2020) as a delusional young man who attacks a couple with a ninja sword before the film is deconstructed through flash-backs and forwards exploring the relationships between its four central characters.

    This year’s Hong Kong Panorama—presented with the support of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York, the Festival’s longest-standing partner and sponsor organization—shines a spotlight on a selection of local stories through themes like family, food, and career, and the Hong Kong way of life in general, including five exhilarating new dramedies (among others): playwright-theater director Kearen Pang’s second feature, Mama's Affair, is a brilliant, female-driven, cross-generational story that stars veteran Teresa Mo and Keung To and Jer Lau, both of pop sensation Mirror; Amos Why’s Far Far Away follows a newly minted Don Juan as he drives his dates around town, in a loving tribute to the cultural and natural riches of Hong Kong itself; Sunny Chan’s Table for Six, starring Stephy Tang (NYAFF 2018 Rising Star Asia honoree), a bedroom farce that takes place mostly at the dinner table ​​as the characters share meals and rekindle their romance; the world premiere of Benny Lau’s We Are Family, with Eric Tsang (NYAFF 2017 Lifetime Achievement awardee) and Carlos Chan as rental surrogate family members for a range of functions. And the film debut of actor Justin Cheung and Li Ho, the rambunctious Legendary in Action!, a metatextual ode to the region’s most iconic film genre, featuring legendary real-life wuxia/kungfu star Chen Kuan Tai in a sublimely moving drama about the triumph of the creative spirit.

    Marking NYAFF’s 20th anniversary and the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, five absolute, modern classics directed by five grandmasters of the city’s film industry will be screened. The Festival will be co-hosting, with the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York and Film at Lincoln Center, a free outdoor screening in Hearst Plaza, Damrosch Park of Wong Kar Wai’s queer relationship classic Happy Together on July 16. One of the most searing romances of the 1990s, the lushly stylized portrait of a relationship in breakdown features superstars Tony Leung Chiu Wai and Leslie Cheung Kwok Wing as a couple traveling through Argentina. It’s an intoxicating exploration of displacement and desire, shot by Christopher Doyle.

    The other classics will be part of an all-day must-see series of landmark movies on July 30 at Asia Society: Stephen Chow’s uproarious Kung Fu Hustle; Alan Mak and Felix Chong’s crime thriller Overheard; Johnnie To and Wai Ka-Fai’s Running on Karma, starring Andy Lau as a bulked-up monk; and the milestone horror film The Eye, from the Pang brothers.

    Superstar singer-actor Josie Ho, Hong Kong’s ultimate creative powerhouse, will be at FLC to present her latest project, the inspiring documentary Finding Bliss: Fire and Ice—The Director's Cut, which she also co-produced. As a tribute to the Hong Kong star, the Festival is showing two of her key films: Pang Ho-cheung’s real-estate horror masterpiece Dream Home and Derek Kwok and Henri Wong’s sports comedy Full Strike.

    A second wave of announcements will be made shortly containing the Centerpiece and Closing films, special guests, major awards, and exciting events. NYAFF is also thrilled to host its first post-Covid Opening Night Market, with live music and Asian food stalls, as well as a range of other parties and receptions.

    From the deadly serious to the gleefully absurd, from the disquieting to the freaky, NYAFF continues to celebrate the most vibrant and provocative cinema out of Asia today.

    The New York Asian Film Festival is co-presented by the New York Asian Film Foundation and Film at Lincoln Center, and takes place from July 15–28, 2022 at FLC’s Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street), and on July 23 and July 29–31 at Asia Society (725 Park Avenue). It is curated by Executive Director Samuel Jamier, Associate Director Claire Marty, and programmers David Wilentz, Karen Severns, Koichi Mori, and Jenny Lin.


    THE FUNERAL (DAN-QUEI SHEN)
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-29-2022 at 02:52 PM.

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    Links to the reviews:
    Angry Son 世界は僕らに気づかない (Kasho Iizuka, Japan, 2022)
    Before Next Spring 如果有一天我将会离开你 (Li Gen, China, 2021)
    Big Night!(Jun Robles Lana, Philippines, 2021)
    Broken Commandment 破戒 (Kazuo Maeda, Japan, 2022)
    Confession 자백 (YOON Jong-seok, South Korea 2022)
    Dealing with Dad (Tom Huang, US, 2022)
    Finding Bliss: Fire and Ice - The Director's Cut ]尋找極致的喜悅:火與冰 (Kim Chan, Dee Lam, Hong Kong, 2022)
    Funeral, The 頭七 (Dan-Guei Shen, Taiwan, 2022)
    Girl on the Bulldozer, The 불도저에 탄 소녀 (Park Ri-woong, South Korea, 2022
    Grown-Ups わたし達はおとな (Takuya Kato, Japan 2022)
    Happy Together 春光乍洩 (Wong Kar-wai, Hong Kong 1997)
    I Am More
    모어 (Lee Il-ha, South Korea, 2021)
    Intimate Stranger 親密な他人 (Mayu Nakamura, Japan 2021)
    Legendary in Action!]大俠 Action! (Justin Cheung, Li Ho, Hong Kong, 2022)
    Lesson in Murder 死刑にいたる病 (Kazuya Shiraishi, Japan, 2022)
    Life for Sale 售命 (Tom Teng, Taiwan 2021)
    #LookAtMe (Ken Kwek, Singapore, 2022)
    Mama Boy 初戀慢半拍 (Arvin Chen, Taiwan 2022)
    Manchurian Tiger 东北虎 (Geng Jun 2021)
    Nothing Serious 연애 빠진 로맨스 (Jeong Ga-young , South Korea 2021)
    Offbeat Cops 異動辞令は音楽隊!(Eiji Uchia, Japan, 2022)
    One and Four一个和四个 (Jigme Trinley, China, 2021)
    Ox-Head Village 牛首村 (Takashi Shimizu, Japan, 2022)
    Perhaps Love 장르만 로맨스 (Cho Eun-ji, South Korea, 2022)
    Ribbon (Non, Japan, 2022)
    Ripples of Life 永安镇故事集 (Wei Shujun China 2021)
    Sales Girl, The Худалдагч охин (Janchivdorj Sengedorj, Mongolia, 2021)
    Shin Ultraman シン・ウルトラマン(Shinji Higuchi Japan 2022)
    Thieves, The 도둑들 (Choi Dong-hoon 2012)
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-20-2022 at 09:06 AM.

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    Before Next Spring 如果有一天我将会离开你 (Li Gen, China, 2021)

    This meandering ensemble piece focuses on Chinese residents in Japan working in a popular Chinese restaurant in a Tokyo suburb. One is a student only there for the year; others are staying at various status levels. In-fighting and intimacy and some vibrant young actors.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-29-2022 at 12:29 AM.

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    One and Four一个和四个 (Jigme Trinley, China, 2021)

    A double-cross mystery in a gnarly far-north setting with shades of THE HATEFUL EIGHT, this is the debut of the son of Tibet's best known director, Pema Tseden. Humorous, atmospheric, and able, it made me think of another famous son's debut, Panah Panahi's HIT THE ROAD. But Trinley's humor doesn't have that kind of resonance. It is entertaining, though.

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    Angry Son 世界は僕らに気づかない (Kasho Iizuka, Japan, 2022)

    Not sure how much of this is autobiographical but the director is a trans person and a passionate spokesperson for minorities. The protagonist is half Japanese, half Filipino growing up with Japanese prejudice and on top of that is gay. He fights all the time with his Filipina bar hostess mother. There is some crudeness here, but also passion and conviction. This is a director giving voice to the unheard in Japanese cinema.

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    Broken Commandment 破戒 (Kazuo Maeda, Japan, 2022)

    This is about minorities too, the "eta" or outcast people whose ostracism was supposed to end in the nineteenth century. The stigma had remained, as treated in the famous 1906 novel of which this is a third screen adaptation. This has a stolid, proper TV-costume-drama-series quality but is polished and serious. Much to be learned here.

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    Grown-Upsわたし達はおとな (Takuya Kato, Japan 2022)


    Another big change of pace, this is a sophisticated, minimalist, elegant vérité film set in the present day. Two slouchy, good-looking art students living together find their Gen-X cool disrupted when the girl unexpectedly gets pregnant. In his screen debut director Kato shows his theatrical and playwrighting background in a command of hip, vernacular dialogue and a precise sense of how people sound when they argue.

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    Intimate Stranger 親密な他人 (Mayu Nakamura, Japan 2021)

    Still another change of pace and genre, this is a suave little psychological horror mystery film. Mayu Nakamura, who studied film at NYU, has been making documentaries for fifteen years but returns for her second feature. She wanted an over-thirty female protagonist and features the excellent Asuka Kurosawa. She plays a strange, lonely woman during COVID whose young son has gone missing who bonds with a pretty young man who's a runner for scammers. A strange relationship develops.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-29-2022 at 12:28 AM.

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    Lesson in Murder 死刑にいたる病 (Kazuya Shiraishi, Japan, 2022)

    Shiraishi is a veteran director and his BLOOD OF THE WOLVES was featured in the 2018 NYAFF. This closely follows the format of Demme's SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, with somewhat less exciting results. Warning: there are scenes of torture that are disturbing. Viewers may find revelations about the handsome young investigator (the Jodie Foster figure) exciting, but this is no Hannibal Lecter.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-28-2022 at 11:10 PM.

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    Ox-Head Village 牛首村 (Takashi Shimizu, Japan, 2022)

    The third in a popular horror trilogy from a very prolific director whose JU-UN GRUDGE series has been a big success and been remade in the US. Acting and writing are below par, though.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-28-2022 at 11:13 PM.

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    Ribbon (Non - Japan 2022)

    Non (actress, writer, model Rena Nonen), a multitalented young woman who might be a Japanese Miranda July, and has made a feature about the early days of COVID and the suddenly shrunken world of an art student (played by Non herself) who becomes confined to her little apartment when her school shuts down.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-30-2022 at 01:24 AM.

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    Offbeat Cops- 異動辞令は音楽隊!(Eiji Uchida, Japan 2022)

    Well known actor Hiroshi Abe dominates this film about a macho cop with an out-of-control zeal who finds his bliss as a drummer when demoted to the police band. Director Uchida got the idea watching a video of a flash mob of a police band. Might have worked better as a TV series where the lack of coherence of the story would show less. Probably doesn't work much as a comedy for Western viewers.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-03-2022 at 10:49 PM.

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    Shin Ultraman シン・ウルトラマン (Shinji Higuchi, Japan 2022)

    A heady mixture of pop cultural references from the Sixties with up-to-date CGI about extraterrestrials and campy monsters that frankly bored me, but fans of Godzilla movies/TV will perhaps be satisfied by this full-dress, updated version.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-03-2022 at 10:49 PM.

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    Finding Bliss: Fire and Ice - The Director's Cut 尋找極致的喜悅: 火與冰 (Kim Chan, Dee Lam 2022)

    Unusual and enthusiastic documentary about, or from, a group of fledgling Hong Kong musicians/thespians, typically, depressed by the meltdown of their freedoms under Chinese rule, who make a brief self-development and cultural-mixing trip to Iceland, a country nowadays considered to be one of the world's happiest.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-03-2022 at 11:40 PM.

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