Friday, 2 October 2009
The Good, The Bad, The Weird
"An intense, visceral, full-contact experience" Derek Elley, Variety Magazine
Spaghetti and rice western The Good, The Bad, The Weird.
"This is filmmaking as rodeo ride: thrilling as hell while it lasts." Time Out London
A hit at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) presents an extended season of Kim Ji-woon's staggeringly funny and fast-paced spin on the spaghetti western.
What begins for a trio of bandits as a hunt for treasure, The Good, The Bad, The Weird ends up being a comedic romp across the plains of 1930s Manchuria. The spectacular set pieces, rousing chase scenes and stunning horse and gun-play of this "kimchi" western will leave big-screen audiences gasping for breath and hollering all the way to the end credits!
Currently one of the most talented and acclaimed writer/directors in the Korean film industry, known for his ability to manipulate and beautifully reshape genre films, Kim Ji-woon won best director for The Good, The Bad, The Weird at the Sitges Catalonian International Film Festival (2008).
After introducing a new genre that the director called 'gory comedy'with The Quiet Family (1998), Kim went on to explore comedy in The Foul King (2000), film noir with A Bittersweet Life (2005), and horror with A Tale of Two Sisters (2006).
Through each film, he showcased his inventive take on storytelling, style, genre and other cinematic tools and forms. What is more, each of these films has become representative of its respective genre in Korean cinema.
In his latest film he attacks the Spaghetti Western with gusto: with horse-mounted bandits, steam engine trains, opium-filled brothels and more, Kim claims the genre as his own.
In 1930s Manchuria (the historical name given to the North Eastern region of Asia between Russia and China) the province is in a state of anarchy and chaos. The governing powers are losing control over the outlaws. Guns and swords rule over law. Russians, Chinese, Manchurians and Koreans clash in a land fraught with danger and tension.
The film's leads are a train robber, a bounty hunter and a bandit leader (of course!) all just trying to survive the turbulent times.
Kim recreates a lush and spectacular Manchuria with rich, colourful images: a train full of people of different races and classes; alluring beauties in blood-red Chinese dresses in a densely fogged opium house; north winds blowing over the great plains; illegal weapon makers; outlaws; merchants and slaves in the black market.
With a budget of over $17 million, it is the largest-scaled production to be mounted in Korean film.
Kim's all star cast consists of three of Korea's top male actors in the lead roles: star of Joon-ho Bong's The Host (2006), Kang-ho Song plays 'The Weird' train robber; Korean heartthrob Byung-hun Lee, soon to star in G.I Jo The Rise of the Cobra (2009), stars as 'The Bad' bandit; and Woo-sung Jung plays the bounty hunter, 'The Good'. Together they create an explosive energy.
Don't miss The Good, The Bad, The Weird screening for three weeks in October as part of ACMI's Long Play program.
Screening detais are available here
More information about the film is available at http://www.thegoodthebadtheweird.co.uk/
[direct phone] 61 3 8663 2475 [fax] 61 3 8663 2498 [mobile] 0434 603 655