'New Currents' at the 22nd Seoul International Women's Film Festival introduces a selection of twenty films by women directors across the world—Canada and the USA, European countries including France, Switzerland, Germany and Greece, and Asian countries including Japan, China and Indonesia. These women directors shed a light on the lives of different women through a variety of cinematic forms—drama, thriller, war, documentary and experimental film.
The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open and Startup Girls ask difficult questions about the possibility of women's solidarity in a tough and unchanging society. Although each film has its own story, conflict, cultural background and mode of expression, women come together and communicate with one another even in the face of a cold, harsh world. Solidarity may only last a moment or may never be possible, but "the body remembers those moments." In Proxima, Mare, and THE LANDLADY, we come across women who try to put their lives back together in the midst of fraught human relationships, social obstacles both big and small, and the changes that they undergo throughout their lives. The ways in which they tackle each crisis may be predictable or questionable, but we support them all. Caught in the Net, Flag, Blue Sky, Party and The Pregnant Tree and the Goblin consider how to portray their subjects in the form of documentary filmmaking. Each has a different reason for setting a certain distance from its subject and choosing a format with which to express it. Inevitably, the results are all different. These films offer a chance to intensely experience and engage with the depth and breadth of their messages. Knives and Skin, Red Fields, Nova, and Two Blue Stripes make new attempts within the framework of their genre. Another common feature of the three films is they show both affection for and the limitations of the characters that they portray. Meanwhile, also recommended are: Song without a Name, which presents an astonishing artistic and audiovisual experience alongside a critique of Peru's political situation; Simple Women, a highly personal film with which anyone organizing a part of their life into a cinematic experience can identify; Sisters Apart and Zana which observe the impact of war from gendered perspectives; and last but not least Toni Morrison: The Pieces I am which discusses the late Toni Morrison's literary world as well as her status as a legendary figure in American black literature.
'New Currents' features works that question the validity of the existing traditions and systems, portraying the kind of world and people that the directors seek to feel, conveyed through films which the audience can experience together. We can sense the emergence of directors who do not necessarily wish to add their works to the latest collection to the tradition vampirism in the film history whch rely on the practice of reenactment of genre, or breaking it to create a new, expanded one. I hope you join us in witnessing the arrival of new films. HWANG Miyojo / Programmer