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Hong Sang-Soo is one of the most revered Korean moviemakers in European and North-American festivals. The New York Times has considered him as “one of the most authentic moviemakers that has recently emerged in the world cinema scenario”. He has won awards in Rotterdam, Vancouver, Tokyo and Cannes. Contrary to the commercial Korean cinema – that currently produces Hollywood-type movies – Sang-Soo makes intimate and reflexive movies that include a touch of irony. He was born in Seoul in 1960, and studied cinema at Chungang University before going to the California College of Arts and Crafts and the Chicago Art Institute. He spent a few months in the Cinemateca Francesa, Paris. It is rare to include six of Hong Sang-Soo’s movies in a retrospective show such as this; his movies have almost never been seen in Brazil.

Many have suggested that Sang-Soo’s work is significantly influenced by the European cinema, from Alain Resnais to Antonioni. Some have suggested that his sketches could be seen as those of an “Eastern Woody Allen” (colder, more languid, however). Some of Sang-Soo’s authentic ideas appear to recur in his work. His characters are always in ambivalent situations, begin incapable of creating bonds, involved with moviemaking or screenplay writing. There is always a love triangle, a woman between two men, a masculine obsession, a revelation, one or two points of view, a lot of alcohol consumption, repetition, conflict and some sex. Sexuality is a recurring theme that is something ever to be solved; one day, who knows, in the next movie. (F.A)