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July 7, 2017

[Just out on Blu-ray] "Master" Limited Editions

Source: HanCinema.net
 
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"Master" Blu-ray limited editions are available to preorder with English subtitles from YESASIA.

Blu-ray (Scanavo Case Full Slip Limited Edition) (Photobook + Photo Card Set) with English subtitles

A Type

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Photobook + Photo Card Set

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Order from YESASIA

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Blu-ray (Scanavo Case Full Slip Limited Edition) (Photobook + Photo Card Set) with English subtitles

B Type

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Photobook + Photo Card Set

miniphoto858118.jpg

Order from YESASIA

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August 21, 2017

MA$TER to be released on November 10, Lee Byung Hun to promote in Japan

Source: SPICE 1/2, Sports Trend

Korean movie MA$TER starring Lee Byung Hun, Kang Dong Won and Kim Woo Bin will be released in Japan on November 10. Actor Lee Byung Hun will be meeting the Japanese fans and audience for the movie promos.

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September 6, 2017

MASTER, MEMOIR and SHADOWS Book Dates in Japan
Korean Thrillers Head East

by Pierce Conran / KoBiz

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A trio of Korean thrillers, KIM Jee-woon’s The Age of Shadows (2016) CHO Ui-seok’s Master (2016) and WON Shin-yun’s MEMOIR OF A MURDERER, are all headed to Japanese theaters in the coming months. Both titles that feature LEE Byung-hun will be released in November, with the third to follow in January.

The first Warner Bros. Korea production, Colonial Era spy action-thriller The Age of Shadows became Director KIM’s biggest hit during the Chuseok season last year when it welcomed 7.5 million viewers. Featuring SONG Kang-ho, GONG Yoo and LEE Byung-hun in a small role, the film will infiltrate Japan at some point in November.

LEE Byung-hun, GANG Dong-won and KIM Woo-bin form the core trio of financial fraud thriller Master from CJ Entertainment and Cold Eyes (2013) director CHO. The most successful title during the end-of-year period in 2016 with 7.15 million entries, the film will be out in Japan on November 10th.

Lastly, January 27th will welcome the release of MEMOIR OF A MURDERER, a new serial killer thriller starring SUL Kyung-gu and The Suspect (2013) director WON. The film, which is based on a novel of a killer with Alzheimer’s trying to protect his daughter from another killer, hits Korean screens this week through distributor Showbox.

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September 8, 2017

Lee Byung Hun greets fans at MA$TER Promotion in Japan

Source: STARNEWS ++ (ELBH Google-translate)

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Byung-Hun Lee / Photo credit = BH Entertainment

Actor Lee Byung-hun had visited Japan for the promotion of his movie "Master" on April 4. 

According to BH Entertainment on the 8th, Lee Byung-hun, visited Japan to promote the film 'Master' which is to be released all over Japan on November 10. At the preview event the actor had a direct communication with local audiences a year after 'Inside Men' was released in the country. 

Lee Byung-hun in the movie 'Master' that opened in Korea in December last year, played the major role in the scandalous fraud thriller which attracted 7.14 million moviegoers.

Lee Byung-hun had participated in stage greetings in all 10 Shinjuku Toho cinemas. It is meaningful to note that Lee Byung-hun is the first among overseas actors to perform a large-scale preview and stage greeting before a movie opening like this. In particular, as soon as the ticket reservation was opened, all 1800 seats were sold out that day,  proving the hot interest of Japanese audiences toward Lee Byung Hun. 

In addition to the intensive reports of the local media and the enthusiastic cheers of the audience, Lee Byung-hun had a Q & A time in each auditorium and communicated with the audience intimately. Lee Byung-hun said, "I am deeply grateful to the fans who have filled the seats and I am honored to have a lot of interest and love. 

On the other hand, Lee Byung-hun will continue to promote the film "The Fortress", which will be released on October 3, after concluding the filming of the movie "It's Only My World" in August.

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Photo courtesy = BH Entertainment

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A really positive MA$TER review user posted image

 

September 23, 2017


[Guest Film Review] "Master"


Source: HanCinema.net

 

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If one thing could be said for "Master", it is that it is timely. Dealing with the concept of pyramid frauds, the corruption of the multinational companies, and their ties to politicians in a time when Korea is facing a scandal that led to the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye was a definite recipe for success. Furthermore, the presence of Lee Byung-hun, Gang Dong-won and Kim Woo-bin at the helm insured the film's financial success even more, with "Master" taking the 32nd place on the list of highest-grossing films in South Korea of all time, as of February.

 

"Master" (Festival entry) is screening at London Korean Film Festival, that will be on October 26 to November 19.

 

Jin Hyun-pil is the Chairman of One Network, the kind of fund that has thousands of followers, bringing some extreme innovations in the financial world, such as paying dividends each day. Led by its charismatic leader and his two main associates, Park Jang-goon who deals with the tech, and Kim Mi-yong, also known as Mother Kim as head of PR, Chairman Jin has managed to accumulate power by bribing officials (Mother Kim's part) and money through electronic frauds (Park's part).

 

However, Kim Jae-myeong, the head of an elite investigative team is on his trail, and when he and his number two, Sin Gemma, find leverage with Kim, Chairman Jin's "accomplishments" are put in danger, while Park becomes excruciatingly unsure about where his loyalties lie.

 

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After the initial events, the film's setting changes, and a bunch of ruined or on the brink of characters repeat their battle in Manila as the allegiances start changing once more.

 

Jo Eui-seok directs and pens (along Kim Hyeon-deok) a very entertaining film that incorporates, apart from the aforementioned elements, a plethora of elements of mainstream cinema. In that fashion, the basis of the movie may be an agonizing thriller with many plot twists, but there are also car chases, gunfights, a martial arts scene, drama (although brief and not at all melodramatic) and very beautiful protagonists (both men and women) in different styles of appearance. The fast pace, implemented expertly by Shin Min-kyung's editing -- particularly in the action scenes -- and the impressive cinematography by Yok Yoo also stress this trait, as the latter wraps the film in an impressive visual package that makes the production even easier on the eye. The elaborateness in the technical department extends to Park Elhen's production design, which presents interiors filled with luxury or rundown buildings with the same artistry, and Cho Sang-kyung's costumes, which have the protagonists looking as good as possible.

 

Some excessiveness in the script does appear, particularly in the second part where Jo Eui-seok seems to have gone a bit overboard with the concept of the characters and the story, but even that hyperbole fits the general commercial aesthetics of the film, much like with Hollywood action blockbusters.

 

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Despite being the "smaller" name of the three main characters, Kim Woo-bin as Park Jang-goon is the main protagonist of the movie. His performance is quite good as a man caught amongst powers bigger than he is, particularly when he realizes that he is better off as a subordinate rather than the main man. Gang Don-won as Kim Jae-myeong is as cool as ever in the role of the determined hero, that seems to suit him to the fullest. However, I felt that his part, as a kind of father figure to Park, is a bit hyperbolic, particularly since the former is 28 and the latter 36.

 

Lee Byung-hun as Chairman Jin is the one who steals the show as the archetype of the "noble villain" who will stop at nothing to achieve his goals of money and power. His character is the one presenting Jo's main comments about the extreme immorality of large corporations and their connection to the political system. I found the highlight of his performance the scene where he tries to reconcile Park with Mother Kim, in a sequence where he manages to talk and act softly, all the while emitting a permeating sense of danger.

 

Eom Ji-won as Sin Gemma and Jin Kyung as Mother Kim play similar roles, as their characters are sexy and tough at the same time, while the omnipresent Oh Dal-soo has, once again, a sort of comic relief role. All of them are quite good in their parts.

 

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"Master" is an impressive film that will satisfy all fans of action thrillers, and a clear indication of the path commercial Korean cinema is taking at the moment, which is quite similar to the one of Hollywood blockbusters, with the addition of the theme of higher-up corruption. 

 

Review by Panos Kotzathanasis

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Source: LKFF 2017 // Twitter

 

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Master (Booking not yet available)

Film info
2017.

Directed by Cho Ui-seok ,

Starring Lee Byung-hun, Gang Dong-won, Kim Woo-bin, 

Cert 15 , 143 mins.

 

Lee Byung-hun plays the charismatic orchestrator of an elaborate ponzi scheme whose livelihood is threatened when Gang Dong-won’s ambitious investigator goes after him. The financial crimes unit attempts to turn the conman’s right hand man (Kim Woo-bin) in the organisation but as they close in, cronyism and evasive maneuvers keep him out of handcuffs. Just as capture seems imminent, the conman scampers away with his loot to the Philippines. An explosive chase ensues far outside the investigator’s jurisdiction when a crook’s political connections and the investigator’s rulebook must be traded in for good old guns, brawn and street smarts.

 

Cold Eyes director Cho Ui-seok explores financial anxieties and political corruption in the first half of this taut, star-studded thriller before switching to vibrant action when the production moves to the colourful, sun-drenched slums of Manila for its back half.

 

Regent Street Cinema, 06 Nov 17 6:30 pm

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September 28, 2017

 

Hong Kong’s Festive Korea to Screen 19 Films
7th Edition of Korean Culture Celebration in HK

 

by Pierce Conran / KoBiz

 

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Festive Korea will kick off its 7th edition in Hong Kong on October 5th and run until November 30th, during which it will screen 19 films from Korea, ranging from indie documentaries to commercial blockbusters.

 

The festival’s cinema section is broken down into three streams this year: ‘Hall of Korean Film - Kolor Infinity’ is a section devoted to recent mainstream films out of Korea; ‘University Movie Screening’ features major Korean blockbuster from the last decade’; and ‘Korean Independent Movies’ focuses on recent low-budget titles.

 

‘Hall of Korean Film - Kolor Infinity’ comprises the family drama Canola (2016), 1980s-set Gwangju drama A Taxi Driver, North Korea action-drama Confidential Assignment, serial killer thriller Bluebeard, cop comedy Midnight Runners, music drama One Step, gritty youth drama Derailed (2016), man-on-the run thriller Fabricated City, court drama New Trial, financial action-thriller Master (2016), family comedy MY ANNOYING BROTHER (2016), and cop thriller Veteran (2015).

 

‘University Movie Screening’ will feature the women’s handball drama Forever The Moment (2008), heist thriller The Thieves (2012), North Korea action-thriller The Suspect (2013), indie sports comedy The King of Jokgu (2013), and period action film KUNDO: Age of the Rampant (2014).

 

Finally, ‘Korean Independent Movies’ will screen the musical horror Midnight Ballad For Ghost Theater (2006) and the smash hit documentary My Love, Don’t Cross That River (2014).

 

Festive Korea is presented by the Consulate General of the Republic of Korea in Hong Kong and is supported by Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

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user posted image

 

October 14, 2017

 

Maturing Korean Film Industry Seduces Global Markets

 

Source: LKFF2017
 

Film lovers from around the world often look to Korea for the next new thing. But after two decades of tailoring genres to their unique specifications, Korean filmmakers have slowly begun to move away from outright experimentation as the industry settles into a new era marked by confidence and sophistication. With studios also looking to profit from beyond Korea’s borders, more gambles have been taken on big-budget productions capable of competing on the world stage.

 

Beyond committed fans, global markets seem to be responding well, as Korean blockbusters have become an increasingly regular presence in the world’s multiplexes, not to mention widely available online. Korea’s rich arthouse scene also continues to excel on the festival circuit and through specialist distribution channels.

 

Most remarkable in recent memory was Yeon Sang-ho’s zombie blockbuster Train to Busan, which blazed a circuit around the world after its Cannes Film Festival bow in May last year. This included over 11 million viewers at home, and broke several records across Asia, such as highest grossing Asian film of all time in Hong Kong. The UK also got in on the action, giving the film a robust £100,000 theatrical run.

 

A few other films found their way into UK theaters over the past year, including Park Chan-wook’s The Handmaiden, Na Hong-jin’s The Wailing, Kim Jee-woon’s The Age of Shadows and Kim Seong-hun’s The Tunnel. The first of these proved an enormous success, grossing in excess of £1 million.

 

Outside of theaters but no less visible was Bong Joon-ho, who debuted his sixth film Okja on Netflix. Few people were afforded a chance to see the big-budget global fantasy on the silver screen, but director Bong made sure that the UK, which notoriously missed out on his sci-fi opus Snowpiercer a few years ago, was one of only three markets to give the film a day-and-date theatrical release (the others were Korea and the United States). Speaking of Netflix, the online distributor also landed its first Netflix Originals from Korea last year, when it picked up both the nuclear disaster drama Pandora and the sci-fi thriller Lucid Dream.

 

Looking at the films themselves we see how Korean production companies are still experimenting with genres, but the tonal swings have become more subtle and the fragmentary plots have become seamlessly blended into popular narratives capable of wooing vast swaths of the viewing public.

 

A case in point is Cho Ui-seok’s Master, the slick new financial action-thriller that dominated the end of year period as it put the brakes on the new Star Wars entry Rogue One. In it we find three of today’s biggest stars (Lee Byung-hun, Gang Dong-won and Kim Woo-bin) in a tale of high finance crime. Familiar elements of the heist, investigative and action thriller serve to elevate the tale above a cops-and-robbers story while colourful global locations enhance the film’s visual sheen.

 

Meanwhile, the popular Joseon era drama was given a spring in its step with Chung Yoon-chul’s Warriors of the Dawn. Filmed almost entirely in outdoor locations, this guerrilla skirmish road movie moved with purpose and solemnity as it followed the shifting dynamics of characters braving the elements, enemies and each other.

 

This summer, K-horror also came screaming back with The Mimic, from Hide and Seek director Huh Jung. Combining a slick and scary haunted house tale with a strong dramatic backbone and the unfathomable mystery of shamanism, the chills played on the familiar to unnerving effect.

 

One of the titles released during this year’s Chuseok holiday, Crime City is a new Korean thriller exploring a section of Korean society that is often hidden from view – Chinese-Korean immigrants, namely within the Daerim neighbourhood of central Seoul. From debut director Kang Yun-sung, the film combines the grit of a low-rent nook of Korea’s capital with the colourful decors of its denizens. Known as the Joseonjok, these immigrants may be half-Korean, but they are often held at arm’s length from the country’s mainstream and Kang’s lens pores through this little seen facet of society in a violent yet at times comic tale of local detectives and foreign hoods. 

 

On the indie end of the spectrum, we’re also seeing a sophistication not just in the themes tackled by arthouse filmmakers but also the approach used to highlight what they see as the ills of society. For his drama In Between Seasons, one of the standouts from last year’s Busan International Film Festival, director Lee Dong-eun provided a subtle take on the prejudices experienced by the queer community in modern Korean society, even allowing a note of hope to enter his realistic narrative. Veteran social realist Shin Dong-il returned with Come, Together, exploring Seoul’s pressure cooker environment from three different perspectives.

 

UK viewers can look forward to more Korean films this year, including Jung Byung-gil’s The Villainess, LKFF 2017’s final teaser screening, which was given a glossy blu-ray treatment by Arrow Films. With several ambitious blockbusters on the way, each with their own impressive visual effects and streamlined genre elements, UK distributors may be spoilt for choice to thrill audiences in the future as Korea’s film industry continues to mature.

 

by Pierce Conran, 
Film Critic, Journalist and Producer 

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November 6, 2017

 

Kang Dong Won promoting MA$TER ahead of the release in Japan

 

Source: WoW!Korea

 

Nearing the release date (11/10), it's now KDW's turn to promote MA$TER in Japan. 

 

Actor Kang Dong Won, in line with the release of the movie "Master" in Japan, he came to Japan for the first time in seven years! On November 6th, greeting on the stage at TOHO Cinemas Ueno.

 

Clips: dongwook_1821

 

 

Photos: zincwhite45

 

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