Category Archives: Reel Asian

November 11

Reel Asian 2016: The Bacchus Lady

Bacchus ladies are elderly Korean prostitutes, a fact of which The Bacchus Lady kindly informs the viewer. We are introduced to So-young (Yeo-jeong Yoon), the titular bacchus lady, as she enters her doctor’s office and learns she has gonorrhea, which obviously is bad for her business. As she leaves the clinic, she happens on a […]

November 10

Reel Asian 2016: Mixed Match

If you are facing a life-threatening disease, finding a bone marrow match for donation may be life-saving, even a cure, but as we all know, people languish on lists waiting for matches and sometimes die before they ever find one. For people of mixed race, finding that match is so much harder, akin to finding […]

November 09

Reel Asian 2016: Apocalypse Child

Apocalypse Child is a wonderful film. Ford (Sid Lucero), like his beachside town of Baler, Philippines, loves to surf. The surfing craze in Baler apparently started after the crew filming part of Apocalypse Now left a surf board behind. Although Ford embraces his local pastime to the point where he wins almost every surfing competition […]

November 08

Reel Asian 2016: Seoul Station

Before his first live-action film Train to Busan, Yeon Sang-ho’s created Seoul Station, an animated, chaos-ridden zombie caper and prequel to the smash hit film of zombies on a train. In Seoul Station, parallel storylines take us on a treacherous journey. Passersby ignore an injured man when they realize he lives on the street, and […]

November 07

Reel Asian 2016: Bad Rap

Hip-hop culture has reached a level of popularity that it truly transcends racial, gender and cultural lines. Despite this fact, many still associate the genre solely with African-American culture. Yes, artists like Eminem, B-Real, The Beastie Boys and Pitbull have help to shatter this illusion, but the road to mainstream recognition is still a long […]

November 14

Reel Asian 2014: Brahmin Bull

Sid Sharma’s (Sendhil Ramamurthy) life is in a tailspin that he cannot seem to get out off. His marriage has eroded to the point where he and his wife Ellie (Cassidy Freeman) have temporarily separated for the last or six month with no sign of resolution. To make matters worse, after years of paying his […]

November 13

Reel Asian 2014: Mourning Grave

In-su (Kang Ha-neul) has a knack for seeing ghosts, a talent that he opts to keep a secret from his peers. After living abroad, In-su returns to his hometown of Seoul to both seek advice from his uncle Sun-il (Kim Jung-tae), who also has this ability to see the paranormal, on how to deal with […]

November 11

Reel Asian 2014: Fandry

In some places being considered “untouchable” is a sign of elite status, this is not the case in India though. Being part of the “untouchable” caste is a fate worse than death for some individuals. This is especially true for Jabya (Somnath Awghade) and his family in Nagraj Manjule’s heart-wrenching feature debut, Fandry. Coming from […]

November 09

Reel Asian 2014: The Continent

A box office smash in China this past summer, The Continent is a film that has clearly connected with young audiences. Considering that the film is the feature debut from Han Han – a blogger, novelist, and race car driver – it is easy to expect something as diverse and ambitious as the man himself. […]

November 08

Reel Asian 2014: 9-Man

The greatest crime Ursula Liang’s film 9-Man commits is getting us hooked on a sport that most of us will never get a chance to play. Okay, this is not a crime per say, but it is hard to watch the film and not want to immediately seek out the nearest 9-Man game. Similar to […]

November 06

Reel Asian 2014: The Morning After

There comes a point in Fruit Chan’s sci-fi horror/comedy/zombie mash-up The Morning After where one cannot help but sit back and smile. Chan perfectly encapsulates the outlandish nature of the film with a simple shot of a portly minibus driver Suet (Lam Suet) struggling to make it down a deserted road. In one hand he […]

November 01

Hot Picks for Reel Asian 2014

The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival gets rolling this Thursday! A popular spot to catch contemporary Asian cinema, the festival has consistently programmed a plethora of award-winning titles. Showcasing works from all over the world, it can be tough narrowing down what to see at the festival. Here are five films we are excited […]

October 11

Reel Asian Announces Full Slate of Films

The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival (Reel Asian), presented by National Bank, celebrates its 18th annual edition from November 6 to 16, 2014 with high-profile guests from around the world, new venues and three special projects focused on themes of memory and archive. This year, Reel Asian will present 44 films from 10 regions […]

September 26

Reel Asian Shares Sneak Peek of Titles

The Reel Asian International Film Festival is less than two months away, but that does not mean we cannot start the countdown now! Running from November 6-16, 2014 in Toronto & Richmond Hill, Reel Asian has consistently presented a strong lineup of films over the years. To get us excited for the 18th edition of […]

November 11

Reel Asian Review: The Rocket

The world through a child’s eyes is not always filled with a sense of wonder and hope. At least not in the case of Ahlo (Sitthiphon Disamoe), a young Lao boy who has had it tough literally from the moment he was born. The only twin to survive birth, his brother died stillborn, Ahlo’s grandmother […]

November 10

Reel Asian Review: The Great Passage

Japan’s official Oscar selection in the foreign-language film category is an absorbing look at words and the human connection. Yûya Ishii’s latest film, The Great Passage, is a hypnotic look at how not only romantic bonds bring people together, but also how people unite for a shared purpose. The interesting thing about Ishii’s film is […]

November 09

Reel Asian Review: Bombay Talkies

This past May marked 100 years of Indian cinema. Despite being a billion dollar industry, I am almost ashamed to admit how few Bollywood I have seen. However, after watching Bombay Talkies, a joyous love letter to Indian cinema, I am determined to correct this particular cinematic blind spot of mine. Made by four renowned […]

November 08

Reel Asian Review: Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo‏

A word of advice prior to jumping into the latest edition of the Neon Evangelion franchise, do your homework. Based on one of the most popular anime series of all time, which has spawned several television shows and films, Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo offers no favours for newcomers. The third installment in a […]

November 08

Reel Asian Review: How to Use Guys with Secret Tips

How to Use Guys with Secret Tips finds director Lee Won-suk crafting a tale that is steeped in romantic comedy tropes. Choi Bo-na (Lee Si-young) is an unnoticed second assistant director for a television commercial production company. She is treated like a glorified production assistant who works long days for little pay and no recognition. […]

November 07

Reel Asian Review: Confession of Murder

South Korea has produced several entertaining genre bending films in recent years and Confession of Murder is one of them. As with most films that frequently mix tones, it is easy to overlook just how much craft goes into making the film work. The number of tonal shifts that Confession of Murder will no doubt […]