I’m thrilled I was able to see the awesome Korean movie Always at the 30th Annual San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, which runs from March 8-18, 2012.
I didn’t have a lot of time this year so I was glad I could see at least one Korean movie along with my two friends (and fellow Korean film addicts), Jeni and Howard.
“Always” was everything we love about Korean movies! It made us laugh, it made us cry, it made Jeni and me avert our eyes during several of the gruesome fight scenes. There were myriad plot twists, references to Fate, a love story, and not one but two orphans: a blind girl and an ex-con who wants to be a champion boxer.
I don’t know how to begin to describe the plot without making it seem flat. A blind girl meets cute with the ex-con when he replaces her grandfather as a parking lot attendant. Soon love blossoms…and the ex-con has to fight a mixed-martial arts illegal boxing match in Thailand (before international mobsters no less!) in order to pay for a sight-restoring operation for his lady love. And that’s not even the exciting plot twist. Really, the good stuff comes later! Oh, and the third act is pure Korean melodrama!!! What cruel twist may keep the lovers apart forever?. . . You must see this film to find out!
Trailer for “Always” (aka “Only You”)
This year many of the films were showing at the Sundance Kabuki theater in Japantown, which celebrated the Festival with many exciting events. Indie filmmakers were working the crowds to promote their films, a large group of Tibetan children were dressed in traditional costumes to celebrate the showing of a movie about Tibetan music (“Tibet in Song”), and there was even a Japanese storyteller on hand to entertain the kids in the Kinokuniya Mall.
I had a great time!