Takashi Miike's Ace Attorney
Another year has passed and summer is upon us once again, which means it's time for what many consider the City’s most exciting and unpredictable annual film series: the New York Asian Film Festival! The festival—presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and Subway Cinema—highlights both new and classic films of all genres from countries including Thailand, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, and Taiwan. Running from June 29 to July 12, this year's schedule is packed with premieres and guest appearances by some of the hottest names in modern Asian cinema, making it a program that is sure to please.
Although the festival does a fantastic job of highlighting new work from up-and-coming directors, it is equally adept at presenting U.S. audiences with new works from Asia’s biggest names. For example, this year we will be showing the North American premiere of hyper-prolific Japanese director Takashi Miike’s newest film Ace Attorney, which finds the director of touchstones like 13 Assassins, Audition, and Ichi the Killer tackling new ground. Ace Attorney, believe it or not, is based on a popular video game and follows the adventures of young defense lawyer Phoenix Wright.
Yim Pil-Sung and Kim Ji-Woon's Doomsday Book
If that doesn’t sound weird enough for you, check out Doomsday Book, a comedic sci-fi epic from Yim Pil-Sung and Kim Ji-Woon, the director of A Tale of Two Sisters and I Saw the Devil. The film, which outlines three different ways the world may end (zombies, robots, meteors), will also enjoy its North American premiere at this year’s NYAFF.
Audiences will also have the chance to attend the New York premiere of Peter Chan’s Dragon (Wu Xia), the first full-out martial arts film from the director of Perhaps Love, The Warlords, and Bodyguards & Assassins. The elegant Hong Kong flick was a word-of-mouth hit at last year’s Cannes and has been hailed as being on the level of Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Star and fight choreographer Donnie Yen will be in person at the screening.
Takashi Shimizu's Tormented
The festival will feature another genre specialty of Asian cinema: horror. One of this year’s highlights is the North American premiere of Tormented, also known as Rabbit Horror 3D. This tripped-out slice of J-Horror from Takashi Shimizu, acclaimed director of Ju-On, is one of the most atmospheric horror films you will see all year. This is thanks in no small part to the work of cinematographer Christopher Doyle, known for his immense contributions to the films of Wong Kar-wai.
Fans of classic Asian cinema will also be pleased with this year’s lineup, which includes masterpieces such as Chung Chang-Wa’s Five Fingers of Death from 1972. The film is one of the most influential kung fu pictures ever made and is cited by Quentin Tarantino as a personal favorite. Director Chung Chang-Wa will be in person at the screening! We will also be celebrating the ten-year anniversary of Infernal Affairs, the epic crime drama which would eventually be remade in the U.S. as Martin Scorsese’s The Departed.
For a full lineup, schedule and more information on all the films in this year's New York Asian Film Festival, check out the official press release. The on-sale date for this series has been moved to Tuesday, June 12. Thank you for your patience.