Saturday, March 06, 2010

Film Mother receives nominations at overseas film festivals

Director Bong Joon-ho's movie “Mother” (2009) continues to receive favorable reviews at international festivals abroad.

A thriller about a mother's quest to free her handicapped son from a false charge of murder was recently awarded the Best East Meets West Cinema Award at the 25th Santa Barbara International Film Festival in the United States in mid-February.

The movie already won two other international awards last year: for the best screenplay in the Asia-Africa film category at the 6th Dubai International Festival (Dec. 9 - 16) in the United Arab Emirates and the Signis Grand Prix (granted by the World Catholic Association for Communication) at the Mar del Plata International Film Festival in Argentina (Nov. 7-15).

At the above-mentioned Argentine film festival, “Mother” was praised “For being a complete work, which explores what a mother is capable of doing when she is determined to protect her son. The director questions it, and he does it from an ethical place, with no Manichaeism and dogmas. From a formal point of view, it proposes a great richness of expressive resources of many different genres.”

In January this year the film was further lauded as the best picture of 2009 by the Korea Film Reporters Association. Actress Kim Hye-ja, who played the title role of the mother, received the Best Actress award.

“Mother” is currently waiting for the results of the U.S. Green Globe Film Awards, where it was nominated in six categories, including the Best Foreign Language Film. Under the theme “Asia,” the film was further nominated for Best Director, Best Actress, Best International Film, Best International Drama and Best International Thriller.

The Green Globe Film Awards has other Korean films nominated in its Asian section, including director Park Chan-wook's “The Thirst” in Asia's drama, film and thriller sections. In Asia's comedy section there's “Good Morning President” and “Scandal Makers /Overspeed Scandal,” and in Asia's action section “Haeundae” and “Take Off.” Another Korean movie, “Private Eye,” was also added to the Asian thriller category.

Actors Song Gang-ho, Ha Jung-woo, Kim Myung-min and actresses Ha Ji-won and Kim Ok-bin were nominated for the Asian actors.

Director Park's 2003 film “Old Boy” was nominated for Best International Film of the Decade in Asia. The results will be announced at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles on Mar. 23.

Meanwhile, more awards may await “Mother” at the 34th Hong Kong International Film Festival (Mar. 21 – Apr. 6), where it was nominated in six categories: Best Director, Best Film, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Screenwriter and Best Editor.

For director Bong, “Mother” is his fourth film, following “Barking Dogs Never Bite” (2000), “Memories of Murder” (2003) and “The Host” (2006), all of which received rave reviews in the past. Mother is set to be released throughout Asia and Europe in the first half of this year.

Credits to: Kim Hee-sung ( Staff Writer)

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