MEMBERS OF THE FUNERAL (Baek Seung-bin, 2008)
54 Varick St. at Laight St.
Tuesday, January 26, free, 7:00
Reservations accepted at email@example.com or 212-759-9550
The Korean Cultural Service is presenting Korean Movie Night on the second and fourth Tuesdays of January and February at Tribeca Cinemas, with free screenings of contemporary Korean cinema. Things got under way on January 12 with the New York premiere of Noh Young-seok’s DAYTIME DRINKING and continue on January 26 with the North American premiere of Baek Seung-bin’s 2008 dysfunctional family drama MEMBERS OF THE FUNERAL. The death of a teenage boy brings together an estranged father (Yoo Ha-bok), who is attracted to younger men, mother (Park Myeong-sin), who is a mean-spirited teacher but desperately wants to be a mystery writer, and daughter (Kim Byeol), who has a thing for dead people. Flashbacks reveal how they each came to be the way they are, deeply scarred by nasty grandparents, closeted therapists, and other odd figures. Meanwhile, one of the mother’s students (Lee Joo-seung) is writing a novel that seems to mimic the family’s life. It’s all kind of creepy and tongue in cheek, especially the awesome score. It’s a compelling tale, and one that was made for a mere sixty grand. Junh Jai-hong’s 2008 debut feature, BEAUTIFUL, based on an unfinished script by Kim Ki-duk, screens on February 9, followed by BREATHLESS on February 23, a film written, directed by, and starring Yang Ik-june. Korean cinema has been gradually infiltrating North America; this free series is a great way to see what all the fuss is about.