Screened as part of NZIFF 2006
“Hong Sang-soo (Turning Gate, The Virgin Stripped Bare…) continues his distinctly personal brand of filmmaking with this wry story about sex, lies, and cinematic one-upmanship. The less successful of two film-school graduates is hung up on the notion that the other, more flourishing classmate had stolen elements of his life to make his first movie. As art and life keep twisting in a Moebius strip, the male psyche, South Korean version, is bared with detached amusement in all its doggedness, uncertainty, and will to power. The film has a fresh, New Wave physical charm, with Seoul standing in for Paris; a daring structural playfulness; and an audacious fidelity to the perverse, self-defeating impulses of human character.” — New York Film Festival
Hong is uniquely adept at doubling back on a narrative, depicting the same events twice within a film to make shrewd and piquant use of different points of view. It scarcely seems accidental that the central character in this, his most trenchant and boldly bifocal account of male vanities, is a filmmaker.