The Film Society of Lincoln Center and Subway Cinema with programming support from Japan Society previewed some major highlights for this year's New York Asian Film Festival (June 29 - July 15).
The opening night film will be Pang Ho-cheung's comedy VULGARIA. A movie about making movies, VULGARIA was shot in just 12 days, and features gangsters with names like Brother Tyrannosaur, sleazy lawyers, the sex film industry, and men who love donkeys perhaps a little too much. Pang Ho-cheung will be in attendance himself, as the festival also presents his new romantic comedy, LOVE IN THE BUFF, about a couple who meet in the smoke break alley outside their office building and try to make their romance work despite cell phones dropped in toilets, friends who have the death touch, and corporate moves to Beijing.
The 2012 NYAFF Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Chung Chang-Wha, the great Korean action director whose 1972 movie for Hong Kong's Shaw Brothers studio, FIVE FINGERS OF DEATH, was the first international martial arts hit to break through in the West. It launched the Kung-Fu craze in the USA, and he will attend the screening of that classic.
Choi Min-Sik (OLDBOY), regarded by many to be one of the finest actors in Korea, will attend the screening of his latest film, NAMELESS GANGSTER, as well as OLDBOY and his underseen and heartbreaking boxing film, CRYING FIST.
NYAFF will host a special focus on Taiwanese films, including a Fourth of July presentation of the uncut, four-and-a-half-hour SEEDIQ BALE, which could be described as that country's exhilarating, decapitation-filled version of BRAVEHEART, all about its indigenous people fighting for their freedom in 1930. Also screening, will be the hit romantic comedy, YOU ARE THE APPLE OF MY EYE, which set box office records in Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Mainland China.
Filmmaking legend and NYAFF favorite Takashi Miike will be represented by PHOENIX WRIGHT: ACE ATTORNEY, NIGHT FISHING, a 30-minute short film from Korea's Park Chan-Wook and his brother Park Chan-Kyung, NASI LEMAK 2.0, a Malaysian food movie directed by and starring controversial rapper, Namewee, KING OF PIGS, a brutal animated feature fresh out of Cannes, and SCABBARD SAMURAI, the latest film from Hitoshi Matsumoto (director and star of SYMBOL) round out the highlighted titles previewed by NYAFF.