For his 30th feature film, Hong Sangsoo has crafted a slippery yet captivating inquiry into the search for meaning, connection, and artistic satisfaction. In Our Day alternates two seemingly unrelated stories: in the first, a disillusioned former actress named Sangwon (Hong regular Kim Minhee) who has left her profession behind and is recharging at the apartment of her longtime friend Jung-soo (Song Sunmi); in the second, a middle-aged poet, Hong Uiji (Ki Joo-bong), who has become a cult figure for a new generation of young readers, is being visited by a student (Park Miso) making a documentary about him and a young man (Ha Seong-guk) drilling him with questions about the meaning of it all—which makes it difficult for the artist to refrain from drinking, even though his doctors have sworn him off alcohol. From these two disparate strands, Hong delightfully evokes a world rich with enigma and possibility, in which the most seemingly minute detail (the whereabouts of a cat, the spiciness of a noodle dish) has outsized repercussions, and asking life’s big questions often brings us back to square one. A Cinema Guild release.

Recommended Film Comment reading:

Sign up to the Film Comment Letter for NYFF61 coverage and more original film criticism year-round.