Mongolia, S. Korea films win award

AFP-JIJI

Movies from South Korea and Mongolia won $30,000 New Currents Awards for emerging filmmakers at Asia’s largest film festival.

Busan International Film Festival organizers said Saturday that the festival’s biggest prizes went to “Pascha,” by South Korean director Ahn Seon-kyoung, and “Remote Control” by Mongolia’s Sakhya Byamba. It is the first time a Mongolian movie entered and won the competition in the festival’s 18 years.

The awards, given to first- or second-time Asian directors, show the festival’s efforts to discover and support the region’s new talents.

The organizers said “Pascha,” an unusual love story between a 40-year-old woman and a 19-year-old man, won the jury’s heart with its highly original expression. They said “Remote Control” neatly portrayed tensions between reality and fiction.

The jury, led by Iranian director Rakhshan Bani-Etemad, picked “Transit” from the Philippines as a special mention for the section, citing Hannah Espia’s drama about migrant families in Israel.

The 10-day festival that ended Saturday drew more than 200,000 visitors for the second straight year, even as a rare October typhoon forced organizers to reschedule some events and close outdoor booths by corporate sponsors four days before the event closed.

The fair closed Saturday evening with “The Dinner,” South Korean director Kim Dong-hyun’s independent feature.