Director: Yim Soon-rye
Cast: Kim Tae-ri, Ryu Jun-yeol, Moon So-ri
Cert U, 103mins, 2017
"I'm hungry," says dissatisfied student Hye-won (Kim Tae-ri), explaining to her friend Eun-sook (Jin Ki-joo) why she has returned from her studies in Seoul to her rural village. Arriving mid-winter, she has come for only a few days - but will stay on for a year, rediscovering the patience and preparation necessitated by the rhythms of the seasons. Adapted from Daisuke Igarashi's 2002 manga series, Yim Soon-rye's film comes with the barest outline of a love triangle, but is mostly content to observe Hye-won slowly restoring both herself - and the viewer - with a gentle routine of good food and friendship. Along the way, she reestablishes her relationship to her absent mother (Moon Sori) and to mother nature, while reaping the rewards of her own replanted joie de vivre. With its heavy focus on cooking and eating, Little Forest will have you feeling hungry too.
Broadway Cinema, Nottingham, 25 Nov 2018 6:30 pm
Director: Malene Choi
Cast: Karoline Sofie Lee, Thomas Hwan, Seong In-ja
Cert 12, 84mins, 2018
Karoline (Karoline Sofie Lee) visits South Korea for the first time since her adoption by a Danish family as a baby. Whilst staying in a guesthouse in Seoul, she meets other adoptees from Europe and the US who are there with a similar quest - to search for their birth families. Despite their different upbringings, what they seem to have in common is that they are each seeking to better grasp their ‘origin’, or at least allow themselves time to contemplate the issue of their identity.
This film is a hybrid, blurring fact and fiction with both scripted and documentary elements. It draws from the director Malene Choi’s own experience as an adoptee and features two lead actors who are adoptees themselves. The power of the film lies in the fact that many of Karoline’s encounters and interactions in the guesthouse are captured for real. We are allowed to follow the emotional journey of the characters up-close, witnessing their everyday reality interspersed with carefully dramatised situations.
Broadway Cinema, Nottingham, 24 Nov 2018 6:30 pm