BFI London Film Festival: Romance Joe

Lee Kwangkuk’s debut feature (after working as Hong Sangsoo’s assistant on four movies) is phenomenally accomplished. The promo tagline is ‘A Tale of Tales’ and the film certainly delights in juggling quite a few interlinked strands of story. We start with the irascible parents of a blocked film director, who’s gone missing, and then jump back to the moment the director was dumped in a rural backwater and told to work hard on a script. Before you know it, a sweet local hooker is telling him a story about the suicidal Romance Joe, which in turn leads to Romance Joe’s memories of his thwarted boyhood love, and then … It’s not exactly The Saragossa Manuscript, but we’re definitely caught up in a world where one things leads to an unpredictable other. We’re also laughing and blissfully bewildered, and happy to let Lee lead us where he will.

Ritzy, Screen 2 – Oct 17, 2012 8:45 PM
BFI Southbank, NFT1 – Oct 19, 2012 12:45 PM
BFI Southbank, NFT2 – Oct 20, 2012 8:30 PM

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