"A MIDSUMMER'S FANTASIA"
Director: Jang Kun-jae (South Korea)
Location: Gojo city, Nara
Japan & South Korea / 2014 / DCP / 96 min / Japanese & Korean with English subtitle
Korean filmmaker Jang Kun-jae was a runner-up for the Golden SHIKA Award at the Nara International Film Festival 2012, and eventually he was given the right to make a film for NARAtive 2014, as the original winner had a schedule conflict. In the summer of 2013, Jang came to Gojo city, Nara, together with this crew members. "A Midsummer's Fantasia" is a fiction based on his own experience.
Korean film director, Kim Taehoon, visits a local town in Japan before shooting his new film there. The town in the countryside is quiet. Most of the young residents have already moved to big cities. He visits one place to another, interviewing local residents. Park Mijeong, Kim's assistant director and also translator, is now interested in a young man who works at a public relations office of the town while Kim receives a strong impression from the story of a middle-aged man. One night, Kim draws inspiration from the fireworks display in Gojo.
<About the Director>
Born in South Korea in 1977, Jang moajored in Cinematography at the Korean Academy of Film Arts (KAFA). His feature debut Eighteen (2009) won the Dragons & Tigers Award at the Vancouver International Film Festival. The film was invited to many other festivals including Rotterdam, Hong Kong, and Buenos Aires. His second feature, Sleepless Night (2012) was presented in over twenty countries as well as receiving prizes and awards from the Jeonju IFF, Edinburgh IFF and Festival des 3 Continents. He establisehd his own production company, MOCUSHURA, which has produced all of his features so far. Currently Jang teaches filmmaking at Yong-In University as an assistant professor.
This movie is divided into two parts. The first part is about the director Kim (main character)'s visits of places and interviews of residents. Since the part is based on my actual research of the location, Gojo city, Nara prefecture., it can be called a documentary or fiction. The second part is the director Kim's fiction on the basis of his inspiration from the visit and the interviews. These two parts are as if looking at the results of decalcomania, but in part only loosely related. You will see how the director Kim's research and inspiration are turned into a story.