Tiger Unleashed Competition, New York Asian Film Festival 2019, Skip City International D-Cinema Festival 2019
Lee Bo-ram, Kim Yoon-seok
Kim Hye-jun, Yeom Jung-a, Park Se-jin, Kim So-jin, Kim Yoon-seok
Adolescence is a trying period during which one must learn to cope with one’s own emotions while attempting to understand the world you’re about the enter. For 17-year-old Joo-ri, her mother’s psychological degeneration and father’s adulterous affair with a local restaurant owner serve to darken her already sombre mood. What’s worse, her classmate Yoon-ah is the daughter of said restauranteur, putting a strain on their relationship even though they’re both set on bringing this infatuation to an end. When Yoon-ah informs her that a child is forthcoming from their parents’ illicit union, the whole situation breaks down to the point of the girls fighting each other violently at school. However, this contemptuous animosity takes an unexpected turn when Yoon-ah’s mother gives birth prematurely to their little brother, whose life is in serious jeopardy.
Kim Yoon-seok is one of South Korea’s most respected actors. Whether he’s a sympathetic antihero (THE CHASER), an emphatically hilarious teacher (PUNCH) or a terrifying antagonist (1987: WHEN THE DAY COMES), he’s always managed to capture audiences’ attention with his immense talent and undeniable charisma. With ANOTHER CHILD, Kim goes behind the camera as director and co-writer to impress us once again, this time by imbuing his fundamentally feminist debut, set in a profoundly patriarchal context, with a finesse and sensitivity that highlight its narrative richness. ANOTHER CHILD relies on the absolutely mind-blowing performances of four majestic actresses, namely Kim Hye-jun (KINGDOM) and Park Se-jin (in an impressive cinematic debut), as well as Yeom Jung-a (A TALE OF TWO SISTERS) and Kim So-jin (THE DRUG KING), who orbit around a basic and passively detestable male character played by Kim himself. If the film paints a dire portrait of women’s conditions in Korea, is also shines with hope through its two strong and worthy teenage leads, with whom we’d like to spend more time once the credits start to roll on this piece of essential viewing. – Translation: Guillaume Desbiens
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