The Fantasia International Film Festival returns to cinemas for its 26th edition taking place once again in Montreal from July 14 to Aug. 3. With the full lineup now confirmed here’s a rundown of the East Asian features included in this year’s programme:
- One and Four – Tibetan drama in which a forest ranger is surprised by a bloodied man entering his cabin.
- Chilli Laugh Story – comedy starring Sandra Ng and Gigi Leung in which a son tries to convince his mum to turn her hot sauce into a home business.
- Detective vs Sleuths – latest from Wai Ka-Fai starring Sean Lau Ching-wan in which a former top policeman who left the force after suffering a nervous breakdown chases a serial killer known as the sleuth who bumps off suspects in cold cases.
- Dr. Lamb – notorious Category III true crime drama starring Simon Yam as a bloodthirsty taxi driver.
- The Heroic Trio – Anita Mui, Maggie Cheung, and Michelle Yo star in Johnnie To’s 1993 classic.
- Kid with the Golden Arm – 1979 Chang Cheh classic.
- Legendary in Action! – retro martial arts drama in which a formerly successful director gets a second shot at the big time by directing his childhood hero in a remake of a classic serial.
- Mercenaries from Hong Kong – 1982 Wong Jing classic starring Lo Lieh, Johnny Wang Lung Wei, Wong Yue, Chan Wei Man and Nat Chan as a team of mercenaries hot on the trail of a fugitive murderer.
- Anime Supremacy – adaptation of the novel by Mizuki Tsujimura following three women in the anime industry.
- Baby Assassins – a pair of mismatched high school girls raised as elite assassins get swept into gangland conflict while forced to live together to learn how integrate into society in Yugo Sakamoto’s deadpan slacker comedy. Review.
- Convenience Story – comedy from Satoshi Miki in which a failed comedian encounters a mysterious woman at a convenience store.
- Girl from the Other Side – dark anime adaptation of the manga by Nagabe in which a little girl lost in the forest bonds with a mysterious beast.
- Goodbye, Donglees! – animation in which two boys head off into the woods after being falsely accused of starting a fire.
- Just Remembering – bittersweet love story from Daigo Matsui inspired by Jim Jarmusch’s Night on Earth.
- Inu-Oh – a blind Biwa player and a cursed young man exorcise the spirits of the Heike through musical expression in Masaaki Yuasa’s stunning prog rock anime. Review.
- Kappei – quirky comedy in which a collection of adults raised for an apocalypse that never happened must try to live normal lives.
- Missing – darkly comic thriller in which a young girl searches for her father who went missing after saying he was going to claim the bounty on a serial killer he spotted in town.
- My Broken Mariko – Yuki Tanada’s adaptation of the web manga by Hirako Waka in which a woman goes on a journey following the death of a childhood friend.
- My Small Land – a young woman who came to Japan as refugee when she was a child finds her life upended when her family’s refugee status is revoked.
- The Mole Song: Final – undercover cop Reiji finds himself increasingly conflicted in his mission to take down Todoroki in the final instalment of the comedic trilogy. Review.
- The Pass: Last Days of the Samurai – holding fast to samurai ideals a progressive retainer realises his era is at an end in Takashi Koizumi’s homage to classic samurai cinema. Review.
- Popran – a self-involved CEO gets a course correction when his genitals suddenly decide to leave him in Shinichiro Ueda’s surreal morality tale. Review.
- Sadako DX – Sadako gets an update in a contemporary digital horror from Hisashi Kimura.
- Shari – experimental film in which a red monster invades the ordinary life of a snowy town.
- Shin Ultraman – big budget adaptation of the classic tokusatsu series directed by Shinji Higuchi with a screenplay by Hideaki Anno.
- Special Delivery – a jaded delivery driver’s finely tuned existence is upended when she’s forced on the run with the young son of a wanted man in Park Dae-min’s high octane thriller. Review.
- The Fish Tale – latest from Shuichi Okita starring Non in a tale inspired by the life of “fish ambassador” Sakana-kun.
- Tang and Me – futuristic adventure from Takahiro Miki starring Kazunari Ninomiya as a dejected young man who sets off on a journey with an adorable robot when his wife throws him out of the house.
- What to Do with Dead Kaiju – satire from Satoshi Miki in which bureaucrats must try to decide how to dispose of the corpse of a defeated kaiju.
- What’s Up Connection – 1990 drama from Masashi Yamamoto in which a Hong Kong teenager wins a trip to Japan.
- Alienoid – highly anticipated sci-fi drama from Choi Dong-hoon starring Kim Tae-ri in which aliens open a portal between feudal Korea and the present day.
- Chun Tae-il: The Flame That Lives On – animated biopic of labour activist Chun Tae-il who self-immolated in protest of Korea’s exploitative employment environment.
- Confession – mystery drama in which a man is accused of a locked room murder
- Heaven: To the Land of Happiness – a chronically ill thief and a “poetic fugitive” find themselves on the run from a “philosophical gangster” in Im Sang-soo’s playful existential drama. Review.
- The Killer – a former hitman is charged with babysitting a friend’s daughter only for her to be kidnapped by thugs.
- The King of Pigs – live action adaptation of Yeon Sang-ho’s animated drama in which a policeman must stop his childhood friend from taking revenge on those who bullied them.
- Next Door – drama inspired by the life of Kim Dae-jung in which the leader of the opposition tries to battle a government which has installed a surveillance team in the house next door.
- Next Sohee – latest from July Jung starring Bae Doona as a policewoman taking aim at those who exploit vulnerable teenage girls.
- On the Line – a former policeman gets back on the case when his wife is targeted by telephone scammers in Kim Gok & Kim Sun’s steely action thriller. Review.
- Rising Dragon – sequel to The Admiral: Roaring Currents following Admiral Yi Sun-sin (Park Hae-il).
- The Roundup – sequel to The Outlaws starring Ma Dong-seok as a detective who pursues a vicious killer all the way to Vietnam.
- Seire – folk horror in which a man pays a heavy price for attending the funeral of an old flame shortly after his child is born.
- Space Monster Wangmagwi – kaiju classic from 1967.
- The Fifth Thoracic Vertebra – eerie drama told from the point of view of some mold growing on a mattress.
- Stellar – dramedy in which a man comes to understand his father while on the run in his beat up Hyundae Stellar.
- The Witch: Part 2. The Other One – long awaited continuation of Park Hoon-jung’s The Witch.
- Whether the Weather is Fine – Philippine drama in which a mother and son search for missing loved ones in the aftermath of disaster.
- Demigod: The Legend Begins – Taiwanese puppet drama from Pili International Multimedia.
- Fast and Feel Love – drama in which a world champion sport stacker has to learn to look after himself after his girlfriend dumps him.
- One for the Road – a New York club owner returns to Thailand on learning that his friend has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.
The Fantasia International Film Festival runs in Montreal, Canada, July 14 to Aug 3. Full details for all the films are available via the the official website, and you can also keep up with all the latest news via the festival’s official Facebook page, Twitter account, Instagram, and Vimeo channels.
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