With SNOWPIERCER and OKJA, Bong Joon-ho has transitioned to the world of big-budget, multinational filmmaking without sacrificing the qualities—cutting humor, virtuoso style, masterful command of genre elements—that made him a household name in his native South Korea. The AAAFF is excited to partner with the Austin Film Society to kick off 2018 with a retrospective of Bong’s first four features, tracing his evolution from a little-known critics’ darling to one of world cinema’s most consistently successful hitmakers.
The series begins with his feature debut BARKING DOGS NEVER BITE (2000), a scabrous black comedy about class, masculinity, and serial dognapping. For his sophomore outing MEMORIES OF MURDER (2003), Bong turned his sharp satirical eye to a based-on-fact murder mystery involving two mismatched detectives (played by Kim Sang-kyung and superstar Song Kang-ho) during South Korea’s martial-law era. Its success—the highest-grossing Korean film of 2003—fueled Bong’s blockbuster follow-up THE HOST (2006), which reworked the creature-feature formula into the alternately horrific, comical, and affecting tale of a family trying to save its youngest member from a giant river monster. Finally, MOTHER (2009) was a smaller-scale but no less accomplished return to the crime genre, with a stunning performance by Kim Hye-ja as a mother determined to clear her mentally-disabled son of a murder charge.
For more info and to book tickets, visit the AFS website.
BARKING DOGS NEVER BITE – Thurs. January 4th, 7:30 P.M.
MEMORIES OF MURDER – Thurs. January 11th, 7:30 P.M./Sat. January 13th, 7:30 P.M./Sun. January 14th, 4:30 P.M.
THE HOST – Thurs. January 18th, 7:30 P.M./Sat. January 20th, 7:00 P.M.
MOTHER – Thurs. January 25th, 7:30 P.M./Sat. January 27th, 4:30 P.M.