Reviews - Specialty Releases


Film Review: In Another Country

Isabelle Huppert has an inviting, steady glow in Hong Sang-soo’s loosey-goosey, humorously light celebration of the French star, cinema’s possibilities, and his colorful, endlessly combative homeland.

Nov 9, 2012

-By David Noh


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1367088-In_Another_Country_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

Hong Sang-soo’s In Another Country is the ultimate multi-culti film experience, featuring three different stories, all involving a Frenchwoman named Anne (Isabelle Huppert) who travels to the Korean seaside town of Mohang. In the opening sequence, we learn that these tales all spring from the mind of Won-ju (Jung Yu-mi), who is in Mohang with her mother (Youn Yuh-jung), escaping from bill collectors.

In the first story, Anne is a famous film director, vibrantly experiencing Korea for the first time. The second has her as a wife who has come to Mohang to meet her lover, who is a filmmaker. The final episode shows her as a recent divorcée whose husband has left her for a Korean woman. In each segment, characters recur, like a hunky lifeguard (Yu Jun-sang) who has a variety of encounters with Anne, which range from lightly flirtatious to deeply passionate.

Hong clearly enjoyed himself making this diverting piffle, which is beautifully shot and droll in the very best sense of the word. The film encompasses a myriad of amusing takes on Korean culture, with such authentic tropes as shrewishly strong women, even more so when markedly pregnant; the dogged pugnacity of their men, especially when drinking; the perilous and exciting effects of the potently popular drink soju, and seemingly all-wise monks who prove themselves all too fallible. Huppert, who can seem at times the most glacially controlled of actresses—she was almost a self-caricature onstage in Robert Wilson’s recent Quartett—has always relaxed when doing comedy, and she is at her radiant, warm, improvisatory best here.


Film Review: In Another Country

Isabelle Huppert has an inviting, steady glow in Hong Sang-soo’s loosey-goosey, humorously light celebration of the French star, cinema’s possibilities, and his colorful, endlessly combative homeland.

Nov 9, 2012

-By David Noh


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1367088-In_Another_Country_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

Hong Sang-soo’s In Another Country is the ultimate multi-culti film experience, featuring three different stories, all involving a Frenchwoman named Anne (Isabelle Huppert) who travels to the Korean seaside town of Mohang. In the opening sequence, we learn that these tales all spring from the mind of Won-ju (Jung Yu-mi), who is in Mohang with her mother (Youn Yuh-jung), escaping from bill collectors.

In the first story, Anne is a famous film director, vibrantly experiencing Korea for the first time. The second has her as a wife who has come to Mohang to meet her lover, who is a filmmaker. The final episode shows her as a recent divorcée whose husband has left her for a Korean woman. In each segment, characters recur, like a hunky lifeguard (Yu Jun-sang) who has a variety of encounters with Anne, which range from lightly flirtatious to deeply passionate.

Hong clearly enjoyed himself making this diverting piffle, which is beautifully shot and droll in the very best sense of the word. The film encompasses a myriad of amusing takes on Korean culture, with such authentic tropes as shrewishly strong women, even more so when markedly pregnant; the dogged pugnacity of their men, especially when drinking; the perilous and exciting effects of the potently popular drink soju, and seemingly all-wise monks who prove themselves all too fallible. Huppert, who can seem at times the most glacially controlled of actresses—she was almost a self-caricature onstage in Robert Wilson’s recent Quartett—has always relaxed when doing comedy, and she is at her radiant, warm, improvisatory best here.
Post a Comment
Asterisk (*) is a required field.
* Author: 
Rate This Article: (1=Bad, 5=Perfect)

*Comment:
 

More Specialty Releases

E-Team
Film Review: E-Team

Four international human rights investigators descend on political atrocities to determine accountability. More »

Laggies
Film Review: Laggies

Disappointing comedic entry about a late-20s slacker who won’t grow up is writer/filmmaker Lynn Shelton’s first outing directing someone else’s material. Points here for strong cast and an occasional chuckle, but otherwise there’s just no point. More »

Rudderless
Film Review: Rudderless

Well-done indie drama about a lost-soul house painter reborn through rock ’n’ roll is a nice actor’s showcase for star Billy Crudup and an impressive directorial debut for actor William H. Macy. But in spite of some good work onscreen, both hero and story lack the edge and originality to carry this drama beyond respectability. More »

Camp X-Ray
Film Review: Camp X-Ray

Army guard and Guantanamo detainee form a grudging relationship in a thoughtful but far-fetched drama. More »

ADVERTISEMENT



REVIEWS

Fury Review
Film Review: Fury

American tanks fight superior German forces in the closing days of World War II. More »

Birdman
Film Review: Birdman (or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Virtuosic camerawork and a stellar ensemble of actors more than make up for the occasional moment of portentous twaddle in Alejandro G. Iñárritu's latest—and maybe his best—film. More »

Player for the Film Journal International website.


ADVERTISEMENT



INDUSTRY GUIDES

» Blue Sheets
FJI's guide to upcoming movie releases, including films in production and development. Check back weekly for the latest additions.

» Distribution Guide
» Equipment Guide
» Exhibition Guide

ORDER A PRINT SUBSCRIPTION

Film Journal International

Subscribe to the monthly print edition of Film Journal International and get the full visual impact of this valuable resource for the cinema business.

» Click Here

SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

Learn how to promote your company at the Film Expo Group events: ShowEast, CineEurope, and CineAsia.

» Click Here