Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Veteran (베테랑), Train to Busan (부산행) comprise Korean Film Festival at Pitt, March 17 and 31.

The University of Pittsburgh's Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures announced the lineup for its annual Korean Film Festival today, consisting of Veteran (베테랑) on March 17 and Train to Busan (부산행) on March 31.

A New York Times review summarizes 2015's Veteran:
Hwang Jung-min is cool and capable as the longtime detective whose investigation of a friend’s suicide attempt pits him against the conglomerate’s lawyers, thugs and paid-off policemen; he’s a quieter version of the Eddie Murphy or Mel Gibson cop who plays the fool but is good in a fight. The Korean heartthrob Yoo Ah-in plays the preening adversary, whose response to being shown up is to humiliate the nearest woman or assault the nearest pet.
A July 2016 New York Times review summarizes Train to Busan, the 2016 hit zombie movie:
The setup is lean and clean. A flattened deer, mowed down in a quarantine zone in Seoul where some kind of chemical spill has occurred (echoes of Bong Joon-ho’s 2007 enviro-horror film, “The Host”), springs back to life. Then, in just a few swiftly efficient scenes, we meet a harried hedge-fund manager and his small, sad daughter (Gong Yoo and an amazing Kim Su-ahn), see them settled on the titular locomotive and watch in dismay as a vividly unwell last-minute passenger lurches onboard. And we’re off!

Sprinting right out of the gate, the director, Yeon Sang-ho, dives gleefully into a sandbox of spilled brains and smug entitlement. (“In the old days, they’d be re-educated,” one biddy remarks upon spying an undesirable fellow traveler.) As zombies chomp and multiply, an assortment of regular folks face them down while furthering an extended critique of corporate callousness. The politics are sweet, but it’s the creatures that divert. Eyes like Ping-Pong balls and spines like rubber — I’d wager more than a few chiropractors were required on the set — they attack in seizures of spastic energy. They’re like break-dancing corpses.
Both movies will play in 4130 Posvar Hall (map) and are free and open to the public.