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Hahaha by Hong Sangsoo
the 21.05.2010 at 12:00 AM - Updated on 26.04.2011 at 10:43 AM
Hong Sangsoo is a regular at the Cannes Festival , where he has presented four films in the official selection , two in Un Certain Regard and two in Competition. Since his first film in 1996, The Day a Pig Fell in the Well, Hong Sangsoo has described the day-to-day lives of young Koreans, looking with a remarkable sense of detail at their relationships in conflicted couples and their existential disquiet. His universe and his deeply personal aesthetic have earned him renown as one of the great masters of contemporary Korean cinema.
As is often the case with Hong Sangsoo, the characters in Hahaha have a connection with the cinema. Here, Munkyung is a film director, while Jungshik is a critic. The two friends meet up one evening over (more than) a few drinks and recall a trip they each made separately to Tongyeong, a small seaside town in the south of the country, not knowing that they were there simultaneously and with the same people. While Munkyung was seducing the beautiful Seongok, engaged to the young poet Jeongho, Jungshik was on a secret trip with his mistress, at the same time as keeping up with his friend Jeongho (the poet) and his fiancée (Seongok). All this happened without them ever meeting up.
Hahaha mixes themes dear to the Korean film-maker: travel, meetings, chance, seduction, triangular relationships and alcohol. But here, the themes of taking personal decisions and responsibility find a new importance.