Director: July Jung
Cast: Bae Doona, Kim Sae Ron, Song Sae Byuk
Cert 18, 119mins, 2014
Best First Film Award
Stockholm International Film Festival.
Following a personal scandal which disgraces her in the eyes of her colleagues, lesbian police officer Young-nam (Bae Doona, The Host) is stationed to a quiet provincial town in Yeosu as the new Police Chief. In a sleepy town beset by drunkenness, narrow-mindedness and corruption, she becomes the reluctant protector of Sun Do-hee (Kim Sae Ron, The Man from Nowhere) - a timid schoolgirl who harbours mysterious secrets and traumas of her own.
July Jung’s film demonstrates the importance of empathy and compassion over blood ties, fully embracing the sometimes ambivalent and unexpected forms of love that can disrupt our lives. This sapphic mystery plays its intimacies out on a political stage, elucidating the prejudices that haunt Korean society through the depiction of the stigma attached to Young-nam’s sexuality, which threatens to totally destroy the life she has built for herself. Screened in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes in 2014, this directorial debut also gained the accolade of being the first Korean film to receive the Best First Film Award at the Stockholm International Film Festival.