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Asian Academy

Eternal Summer, dir. Leste Chen, Taiwan 2006

Five Flavours film festival is not just about films – it is also an opportunity to dive deeper into the Asian reality, learn about the cultures of the continent, and find out about the current topical issues among Asian societies.

All podcasts are presented in Polish

Every year, Five Flavours invites the audiences for Asian Academy – meetings with experts and lecturers, film and pop culture specialists who widen the contexts of the films from the program. This year, Asian Academy will be held fully online! We invite you to listen to the unique Festival podcasts created in cooperation with the best expert podcasters dealing with Asian cinema and cultures.

Among the topics discussed as part of the Academy are the Olympic Section, Taiwanese Queer cinema, Wong Kar Wai's retrospective, Chinese and Japanese historic cinema, and the Korean film outlook on social inequalities. Listen away!

Filmawka Podcast: The Olympic Section ft. Łukasz Smolarow

Filmawka journalists talk to Łukasz Smolarow, soccer expert and coach who reviews sports cinema for Dwutygodnik. The podcast takes up a number of topics related to this genre – what films are screened in the locker rooms? Is box the perfect metaphor of life? How are athletes, teams and coaches presented on small and big screens?

Azja Kręci: All the Worlds of Wong Kar Wai

Wong Kar Wai's films are worlds of their own that can be explored on a purely sensual and aesthetic level, diving deep into the maker's expressive vision. At the same time, they feed the intellect, opening countless ways of analyzing the hidden tropes, recurrent themes and symbols. The Five Flavours selectioners cast a wide look at the art of the Hong Kong master, follow his fascinations and particular techniques of working with the images, talk about his long-time collaborators, as well as actors and actresses who helped create the Wong Kar Wai universe. They also examine the artist's relationship with the city he immortalized on film, showing how the history of Hong Kong is intertwined with the frames of "Chungking Express" or "2046."

SpoilerMaster: Wong Kar Wai's "In the Mood for Love"

In the newest episode of his Spoiler Master podcast, Michał Oleszczyk talks about Wong Kar Wai's most important artistic achievement (and, at the same time, his most popular movie to this day), the 2000 "In the Mood for Love." In the episode, Oleszczyk talks about the masterpiece's connection to the director's earlier films, the nostalgia for the lost Hong Kong of the 1960s (the city Wong grew up in), the director's unconventional methods of working on set, the themes of nostalgia and longing for the lost time, and about the formal aspect of the film – a cinematic portrayal of impossible love.

Pismo. Magazyn opinii Podcast: About Taiwan

Zuzanna Kowalczyk recommends films and podcasts explaining the unique status of this East Asian country, still not recognized by many world powers. She devotes a lot of attention to the social situation in Taiwan, with a special focus on the LGBT+ community, wondering why it turned into a safe haven for sexual minorities. She also pays attention to the key challenges and issues faced by the Taiwanese citizens and searches for the best reflections of their stories in contemporary culture.

Azja Kręci: History in Japanese and Chinese Cinema – a clash of perspectives in films by cinema masters

Nations often use the past to create the present. The Second World War and the Japanese aggression on China are the main subject of Zhang Yimou's wonderful "Cliff Walkers." Interestingly enough, the Japanese master Kyoshi Kurosawa takes up the same subject in his "Wife of a Spy." How are the Japanese and the Chinese perspectives different? What is the point of making films like these today? What purpose are they serving? The Five Flavours selectioners will discuss it with Katarzyna Starecka of the University of Warsaw Japanese Studies department.

SWPS Project Asia: Dark Territory. From Squid Game to New Korean Cinema

The world media are avidly writing about the success of the series Squid Game, while companies and organizations race to find new ideas for ways to exploit the craze. But the newest Korean hit is hardly easy entertainment – the themes its makers take up touch upon the darkest corners of human soul and the most shameful faces of contemporary society. The conversation is devoted to the links between Squid Game and three new Korean films presented at the Festival: "Not in This World," "Fighter" and "Foul King." It is a story of social stratification, debt, gambling, refugees from North Korea and fight clubs, and a debate on the elements of Korean films that prove to be so attractive the international audiences and the untangling of the cultural mysteries that the films and series are filled with.

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