Few if any contemporary directors have amassed as vast and prolific a body of work as Hong Sangsoo. Working at an unparalleled clip of productivity, the South Korean auteur has helmed 25 of his 27 features this century, each a valuable addition to an oeuvre that returns time and again to the same themes, preoccupations, and strategies, but always with some fresh angle, some radically new way of telling a familiar story. Hong’s films seize the material of everyday life—regret, infidelity, professional frustrations, the casual cruelty and brutish folly of men and women alike (but especially men)—in the service of exploring psychology and metaphysics in elegant, subtly profound ways. In a structural gesture befitting Hong, our two-part survey consists entirely of double features, with each film paired differently each time it screens and special 2-for-1 pricing. This career-spanning retrospective, timed to the release of In Front of Your Face (NYFF59), will also feature in-person appearances by Hong who will return to NYC for the first time since NYFF55 in 2017.

Tickets for both parts of the retrospective are now on sale. Please note: There will be an intermission between films in every double feature. 

The extensive retrospective of films directed by Hong includes a treasure of NYFF selections, such as The Day After, shot in moody black and white, which tracks a roundelay of mistaken identity and déjà vu; Hill of Freedom, a series of disordered scenes based on undated letters received by a woman from her Japanese lover; Hotel by the River, following two tales which intersect at a riverside hotel; Right Now, Wrong Then, a bifurcated tale of an art-film director and a drunken night he shares with a fledgling artist; Woman on the Beach, a classic example of Hong’s trademark double-narrative structure; The Woman Who Ran, a comic triptych of thwarted connections and everyday dysfunction; and Yourself and Yours, a break-up/make-up comedy unlike any other, suffused with sophisticated modernist mystery.

Organized by Dennis Lim and Dan Sullivan. 

Dennis Lim’s monograph Tale of Cinema, exploring the oeuvre of the South Korean auteur via his 2005 film, will be available from Fireflies Press during the second half of the retrospective (May 3-10) and then released in bookstores worldwide in August.

The Hong Sangsoo Multiverse is presented in partnership with the Korea Society: