Programme of 16th Five Flavours Asian Film Festival
The 16th Five Flavours brings a wide array of film emotions – from auteur cinematic searches to explosive genre movies. The program includes the best new pictures from countries such as South Korea, Malaysia, and Vietnam, as well as journeys to the past, to a quickly modernizing Taiwan and to Hong Kong changing under the pressure of big politics after the year 1997.
The 16th Five Flavours Asian Film Festival is held in a hybrid formula. The films are screened in Warsaw at cinemas: Muranów and Kinoteka on November 16-23. The online edition lasts till December 4. Six films from the program will be shown November 17-20 at the New Horizons Cinema in Wroclaw.
The event is dedicated to the memory of our dearest friend Jagoda Murczyńska.
Water Tiger is the lunar patron of this year’s Five Flavours - it represents yang energy and symbolizes strength, vitality and confidence in action.
What can you expect in this year’s festival programme? Here are the festival sections:
Edward Yang: A Retrospective
Retrospective: Edward Yang is the first Polish review of the work of the Taiwanese New Wave master. Still undiscovered by our audience, Yang's neo-modernist films portrayed the changing of the capital, Taipei, with architectural precision, tenderness and occasional irony. From the image of the uncertain, disturbed by the political turmoil of the 1960s, during which Yang spent his childhood; through the specific confusion of the 1980s, when the city was pulsating with both neon energy as well as cosmopolitan ambitions; to a melancholic record of the fears surrounding the end of the millennium, infused with the nostalgia of the 1990s. For almost two decades, Yang has captured something absolutely unique in his films: this extremely complex state of limbo in which Taiwan seems to have been stuck for years - a non-time, a constantly modernized space, forever shifting its identities. Years later, Yang's films were restored, and watching them nowadays opens new pathways for their interpretation.
The retrospective of films by Edward Yang is co-financed by Ministry of Culture, Taiwan, in cooperation with the Taipei Representative Office in the Federal Republic of Germany, Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute, and Kaleidoscope Pictures.
Hong Kong Cinema in Motion
On July 1, 1997, 25 years ago, Hong Kong came under the management of the Chinese administration. For common people, it was a time of uncertainty, for filmmakers - a period of great turbulence. The once high budgets have shrunk, and Beijing began controlling and regulating the market. Paradoxically, this made Hong Kong cinema more diverse - there were great independent filmmakers who felt at ease working outside major studios.
The Hong Kong Cinema in Motion section presents the best films made there after 1997 - emotional gangster cinema, which for decades was a showcase of the Fragrant Harbor, but also modest, brilliant films focusing on the vibrant everyday life of this extraordinary city. Their common denominator is the notion of change and a sense of time inevitably running out. Presented together, they portray the evolution of this cinematography under increasing pressure from powerful political forces.
The section's partner is Hong Kong Economic & Trade Office Berlin.
On the one hand, narratives that are soothing in their simplicity, on the other, comedies full of absurd humor - in the Japan Feel-Good section, we juxtapose two well-worn images of Japanese cinema. The program includes the cult, surreal comedy Funky Forest and the latest films by Shuichi Okita - one of the most empathetic observers of Japanese modern times. Expressive stories, which radiate universal good, as well as films full of extraordinary energy or crazy fairy tales - Five Flavors invites you to look at these pictures of Japan, which usually do not find their place in mainstream narratives. It is an excellent opportunity to revise one’s relationship with nature, deepen the intergenerational dialogue, or experience the cleansing power of female friendship. As the name of the section suggests, soothing the body and elevating the spirits are the main themes here.
New Asian Cinema
New Asian Cinema is the competition section of Five Flavors, known well to its viewers. Ten films, made by authors that are at the beginning of their filmmaking careers, but already display extraordinary talent, make up a colorful and meaningful panorama of Asian Cinema. These are pictures from Taiwan, South Korea, India and others, which follow the pulse of changes in individual countries, highlight important social problems, and provoke long discussions - also with artists who have come to Poland. The International People's Jury will select the winner of the Festival from films from this section.
Asian Cinerama offers a selection of films by recognized filmmakers who for many years have delighted viewers at international festivals. These are also works that won the hearts of Asian viewers and became box office hits in cinemas all over Asia. Guided by a steady hand, with a stunning level of execution - Asian Cinerama are screenings of films by great masters, whose previous works were greeted with enthusiasm by the audience of the Five Flavours Film Festival.
The times when only the Japanese horrors kept the viewers awake at night are over - there are new players in the fear game. Serious outpours of emotion keep flowing to us from South Korea and Indonesia, great films of ever higher production value are being made in India and Malaysia. Asian horrors at Five Flavours provide great entertainment, but also an insight into the issues eating at these fast-developing societies.
The program of the 16th edition of the festival is prepared by: Marcin Krasnowolski, Jakub Królikowski, Łukasz Mańkowski, Zofia Niziołek and Maja Pielak.