Film: Mise en Scène – Part 1 [Compilation]
Year: 2011 & 2012
Director: Various (see individual reviews)
Venue: ICA, London
5 films worth (see individual reviews)
[Total] Running time: 120 minutes approx.
This screening was shown as part of the:
London Korean Film Festival – 2012
(1st November to 16th November)
As these are shorts, I thought it apt that only a small outline of a review was required here… rather than Mini Mini’s long, often rambling ones. Buddha knows why this site remains to be called ‘Mini Mini’ Movie.
No offence to director Choi Dong-hoon on this particular day… But I’m very glad it was the Mise en Scène Part 1 that was Joseon – I mean, Chosun… errr, chosen – by yours truly.
First up …
FILM 1: A Flower does Not Wilt, But…
(Dir. Oh Tae-heon, 2012)
Running time: 25 minutes
A guy. He finds himself being called upon to be involved with his film-school friends. Yes, it’s a film about filming.
An aspiring movie-maker this lad may be but whenever having watched a cut of a movie his words are “it’s boring”, even if the direction and style itself is good in his eyes.
It could be that the character is trying to get over an ex, who coincidentally works on such a film he’s been asked to assist with. Or… he’s simply not bothered about being some kind of movie-set-runner. This young man could offer so much if he were running the show – this is MMM’s inkling anyway.
In summary: Boy meets girl, girl works with boy, we see film with both boy and girl.
FILM 2: Noodle Fish (Omogeo) / 오목어)
(Dir. Kim Jin-man, 2012)
Cast:Kim Jin-man Running time: 10 minutes
A change in style, next. How? Animation meets… Mmm noodles.
What looks like sand at first is soon realised by us as pasta, at least that was this lowly reviewer’s change – or chain – of thought at the start.
Fish and pasta makes for a not only unique and clever display but the writing & voices make it – a ‘healthy’ dose. Well, come on… We all know that fish mixed with pasta is often the least unhealthy option on a menu.
This film is funny and clever. In fact, so clever that it never gives up on wanting to show things from a different angle.
In summary: A film made in Korea without food – or indeed made ‘from’ edibles – would not be a Korean film. A true rarity and rawrity.
FILM 3: Feeling of Winning (Igineun Gibun / 이기는 기분)
(Dir. Han Seung-hun, 2011)
Running time: 24 minutes
Lads, bullying & suicide. Even with these aspects there is much humour and various styles of animation & indeed colourisations thrown in for good measure.
A link also, perhaps that all things in this world are being listened to. Another mini common theme at this year’s festival maybe and I’d say definitely within the realm of this first Mini en Scene… Sorry, Mise en Scène. See the next couple of shorts below*.
In this particular short though, it’s the characters’ own choices rather than unsuspectedly being audio-ally spied upon.
We also have a demonstration of Hari kari, Yakuza battling or as I refer to it at one point, Yuck-uza. Why? There is a masturbation reference.
In summary: A male teen angst, finding oneself story and one which mixes genres, but not genders.
MINI MINI MID-NOTE:
As I said above, “Feeling Of Winning” is about lads, bullying & suicide. I noted that these seem to be a running theme almost, what with King Of Pigs and Running Turtles, at least regarding the bullying aspect.
However, it’s no secret that this festival itself has many – and therefore – deliberate themes and I think this Mise en Scene has similar similarities within it. Let’s call them “Miss-en Links”, or where there the recorded audio (or video) samenesses are, “List-en Scene”.
*The final 2 films have the link that anything you do in your life may be recorded – whether this is demonstrated by audio or by video.
FILM 4: Keep Quiet
(Dir. Hong Seok-jae, 2012)
Running time: 29 minutes
This revolves around an iPhone, plus… another iPhone.
A mix up of almost identical phone handsets reveals a lot more about a conspiracy or cover-up. It’s interesting to note the use of Apple. Is this actual product placement? Well, we know things in Korea are different with such things, and therefore they have more freedom… Or at least they used to, but I’m intrigued to know how this film got ‘allowed’.
Of course, the iPhone is displayed in a positive way… Although there is one part where a character casually states that Apple’s security is “a mess” or “all messed up”, and this is even demonstrated.
It is also the latter which could have been used as a way to get the film approved, as this security measure – or lack of it – is unique to Apple. Both integral to the product and perhaps based on the saying that ‘all publicity is good publicity’. Personally, and being a film-writer myself I like to think there was some kind of bribery at play.
In summary: Messed up or not, this part thriller, part drama, part other is another Miscellaneous smart-ph-ilm (about a smartphone) in this brilliant Mix of Scenes.
FILM 5: Forest
(Dir. Um Tae-hwa, 2012)
Running time: 32 minutes
A tale involving a couple of guys filming a film about Suicide… Yes, suicide again.
At one point I thought the eletronic-cable-loop guy had his own deathwish. Perhaps the various shorts and features I’d seen lately had a subconcious sway on my mind, and that everyone in the world was wanting the top themselves.
Throw in a potential love triangle and envy, a picnic, oh & a slight horror stance and you have many a nice, bizarre Mixed-up-(Scène), in an intriguing story, making an overall clever film.
In summary: No picnic in the park indeed. This could be why it’s bitten the hearts of panelists and won itself the odd Short Film award.
That’s all, Filks*!
I’ll leave you with the fabulous trailer for the LKFF!
* Filks. A combination of Film and Folks.