Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Ten Films to See at Reel Asian 2011

For 15 years the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival has been showcasing some of the best contemporary cinema from East and Southeast Asia. As the 2011 edition of the festival kicks off tonight, we decided to compile a list of ten films screening at the festival we are excited about:


Lover’s Discourse
The opening night gala always offer up some wonderful entertainment and this year appears to be no different. This genre jumping Hong Kong film follows four overlapping stories about individuals afflicted, troubled and obsessed with love


Full Metal Alchemist: The Sacred Stars of Milos
The Elric brothers’ continue their quest for the Philosopher’s Stone and get tangled up in a city’s rebellion in the process. If you are a fan of the series than this film is most likely on your “to see list”


Resident Aliens
Showing in the Youth Presentation category, Residents Aliens is a documentary short that highlights the struggles three Cambodian-American endure when they are forced to return to their native land.


Bleak Night
Set in an all boys school in South Korea, this psychological drama displays the complex and competitive power dynamics amongst three teenage friends.


Pearls of the Far East

Explores the passion and desire over the course of generations by weaving together the forbidden love stories of seven vastly different women. Set amongst a lush Vietnam backdrop, this film is bound to be a treat to both the eyes and the heart.


Piercing 1
Using punk-style animation, and set amid the 2008 financial crisis, the film looks at corruption, discrimination, and disenfranchised youth in modern-day China.


Seize the Moment
With several stellar shorts programs showing at Reel Asian it is tough to choose which one we are eager to see more. However we cannot deny Canada’s strong history when it comes to short films, which is why the Seize the Moment shorts are our pick.


Surrogate Valentine
Musician Goh Nakamura plays himself in this romantic comedy about a musician (Nakamura) and a television actor (Chadd Stoops) who embark on a West Coast adventure that might finally help Nakamura land the girl (Lynn Chen) of his dreams.


Summer Pasture
A look at nomadic life on a remote Tibetan plain and how a young family is facing pressure to leave their traditional way of life behind.


Jump Ashin!
The story of gymnast who falls in with the wrong crowd and uses his gymnastic high-bar skills for gang fighting? Consider us sold! The fact that the film is reminiscent of the playful Jackie Chan films of the 1980s is just icing on the cake.

Full list of films, screening times, and ticket information can be found at the Reel Asian website.

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