South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-ho has made quite a name for himself in the past decade, directing films like the monster flick The Host and 2013’s critically-acclaimed Snowpiercer. A career worth celebrating, to say the least, and one New York theater is doing just that.
Located in Pleasantville, New York, the Jacob Burns Film Center is hosting a Bong Joon-ho retrospective from March 19th through April 2nd, holding special screenings of four of his feature films. Coolest of all, Bong will be in attendance for every screening, making this a must-attend for all fans.
First up is Memories of Murder on March 19th, his second feature film. The search for a serial killer is the focus of this complex, riveting film. When a hard-nosed detective arrives from the big city to straighten out the investigation, the culture of corruption during the 1980s military dictatorship is as frustrating as the incomplete information the local cops provide.
On March 24th is The Host, one of the finest monster movies of the past decade. The talk of the Cannes Film Festival and an international hit, The Host centers on a giant monster that emerges from the river to crush, eat, and grab its victims—and the family that isn’t going to let their little girl go without a fight. It was the highest-grossing film in Korean history at the time.
The Hitchcockian Mother screens on March 30th, about a mother who is devoted to her hapless 27-year-old son. When he is accused of murder, her maternal instincts kick into overdrive, and she sets out to prove his innocence. Critics point out that the monster in this film—a mother whose love knows no bounds—is as terrifying and darkly funny as any of Bong’s other creations.
And finally, Snowpiercer wraps up the retrospective on April 2nd, notable for being Bong’s first English-language film. In it, a post-apocalyptic ice age forces the last humans on earth aboard a supertrain zooming around the world in endless loops. Each car is different—in the back it’s a slum, but an aquarium, a nightclub, and a sushi bar are up front—and there’s no shifting around.
You can head over to the Jacob Burns Film Center’s website for more information, and you can also purchase tickets to individual screenings while you’re there. Each ticket purchase gets you access to a Q&A session with the director, so be sure to clear your calendar for this one!