Chinese film, South Korean drama bag top prize
BUSAN (South Korea): A thrill-aminute actioner from China and a moving South Korean drama about a unique family reunion have taken the top prizes at Asia’s largest film festival, with judges lauding both for their “original” takes.
Savage, from first-time Chinese director Cui Si-wei, pits a forest ranger against gold thieves in a snowy mountain range and won praise from the New Currents award jury at the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) for being “strikingly accomplished and riveting”.
South Korea’s Clean Up, from debut feature director Kwon Man-ki, charts the tale of a struggling woman who is offered a salvation of sorts when she meets someone from her past.
BIFF’s New Currents award comes with prizes of US$30,000 (RM124,800) for the two most impressive efforts from first- or second-time Asian filmmakers and there had been a buzz after screenings of Savage in particular. The film now looks certain for wide commercial release in China and beyond.