You know it’s summer in North Texas when the the sidewalks are sweating, the crepe myrtles are blooming, and the Asian Film Festival of Dallas sets up camp at the Angelika at Mockingbird Station.
The 14th edition returns July 16-23 with 33 features and five shorts blocks, of which several are either world, American, or regional premieres. Most notable are a couple of firsts for the festival: a 3-D film and a feature from Cambodia, a country whose film culture is not nearly as well-known as that of many of its neighbors.
The first few titles have been announced and they include:
Seoul Searching: This festival opener is not the kind of film some would expect from South Korea. It’s an ‘80s teen romantic comedy revolving around three boys from Germany, Mexico, and the U.S. who are sent to camp in Seoul. Variety called it “a sweetly engaging tribute to classic John Huges movies and a refreshing glimpse into the secret life of the Asian teenager.”
Wild City: Veteran Hong Kong director Ringo Lam (the classic City on Fire) returns after a seven-year hiatus with another tour of the Hong Kong underworld. It has been described as “Canto-noir.”
The Last Reel: The first Cambodian film to be shown at the festival, this is a drama about a rebellious girl who discovers the world of her mother who was a movie star in the ‘70s before the Khmer Rouge took over.
The Legend of Qin: This is China’s first 3D animated wuxia (ancient China) martial-arts fantasy.
Someone Else: While much of the focus of the Asian Film Festival of Dallas has always been on films from overseas, it also often showcases films about Asian-Americans. Such is the case with this thriller about two Korean-American cousins, one of whom wants to shed his more conservative, conformist personality for something more risk-taking.
A Girl at My Door: The closing night film -- a drama about a policewoman transferred to a small town -- is another South Korean entry, one which has earned kudos from Cannes to the Chicago International Film Festival. Go here for the trailer.
For more information, go to www.asianfilmdallas.com.
Asian Film Festival of Dallas
Angelika Film Center
5321 Mockingbird Lane