North American Premiere
86 minutes, in Korean with English subtitles
Directed by: Park Cheol-Su, Kim Tae-Sik
Starring: Ahn Ji-Hye, Lee Jin-Soo, Jo Sun-Mook, Oh In-Hye
Film Society of Lincoln Center
Monday, July 9 @ 10:30pm (buy tickets)
Conceived of as a stunt, these two short films form one perfect meditation on infidelity, offering up plenty of cartoonish comedy, naked flesh, and raw emotions along the way. Director Kim Tae-Sik (Driving With My Wife’s Lover) and his mentor, director Park Chul-Soo (Green Chair) share actors and themes, each of them responsible for one half of this two-part film. The first part, “Red Vacance” by director Kim is all raunchy burlesque. The story of a married man and his much younger long-term lover (six years and counting) he’s a guy who’s comfortable in their rut. But when she insists that he take her on a vacation he agrees, feeling like he owes it to her. And of course, that’s when his wife finds out, douses him in gasoline and threatens to set him on fire. This is known as the Korean approach to marriage therapy. Now all three of them have to meet up at a mountain cabin to work out their differences with maximum bodily harm.
The second film, by Park Chul-Soo, is simultaneously much more erotic and much more emotional. In a fit of perversion a woman asks her older lover to be the officant at her wedding. He agrees, but they discover that the empty sex they share is far more powerful than the actual love she feels for her spouse. Beautifully shot, it’s like a high end Zalman King movie, only with a more intellectual bent.
Framed by documentary footage of both directors arguing over their two films and hashing out the details, while casting actresses and trying to decide on a title, RED VACANCE, BLACK WEDDING throws everything in the blender and sets it on “Sin”: there’s boobs, boners, bad jokes, acres of blemish-free skin, beautiful buff people in various stages of undress, and a human heart underneath it all, trying to figure out why we keep rushing into situations where a moment’s pleasure results in a lifetime of hurt.