Hong Sang-soo: The Day He Arrives / The Woman Who Ran - Double Cinema Niche Screening: two films for the price of one, with a single priority ticket price of 2500 HUF for the 2 screenings.
16 June 2023.
19:00 The Day He Arrives (2011)
Longing and disillusionment, creative crisis and inspiration, coincidences, difficult reunions and urban street life are the building blocks of Hong Sang-soo's 2011 film. The filmmaker Yoo Seong-jun (Yu Jun-sang), who has given up filmmaking and lives in self-imposed exile in a small town, returns to Seoul for a short stay. While walking around his former residence, he is recognized by his young fans, who ask him about his work (his answers are as funny as they are poignantly neurotic). An old friend's love troubles turn into a long drink, and Yoo meets a mysterious woman (Kim Bo-kyung).
Shot in black and white, the film fills the blurry memories of fragile relationships and great encounters with sparkling, light-hearted humour. Yoo spent a few days in Seoul with her boyfriend, but it may still be her first day there. Maybe he learned something from meeting his ex-girlfriend, or maybe he had to rediscover the woman who looks eerily like him for the first time. Since life at Hong only plays out in a day, he has no choice but to replay his strange day over and over again.
20:35 The Woman Who Ran (2020)
While her husband is away on business, Gam-hee (Kim Min-hee) meets up with three friends in the suburbs of Seoul. They have a friendly chat, as usual. The protagonist's impeccable manners are unquestionable, but this time she's hiding something under the surface. How long can Gam-hee keep his secret? Will a chance encounter cause him to break the silence unexpectedly?
Hong's camera calmly captures the suburban exchanges from a fair distance. Halfway through the conversation, he occasionally approaches his subjects, but gives no indication of his intentions. He invites his viewer to recalibrate his expectations, to assess the nuances, and to witness the everyday drama that emerges from relationship slip-ups and repressed sexual desires. For all the while, nothing sensational seems to be happening. Yet the sensation of the film is right in front of our eyes: perhaps we should look for the answer in the title.