Film Festival

15th Transilvania International Film Festival – Asian Presence


We take a look at the twenty-two Asian films presented this year at the Transilvania International Film Festival that will take place from May 27th until June 5th in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.


Baahubali: The Beginning by S.S. Rajamouli – India | 2015 – 159 min.

Raised in a remote village, Shivudu grows up a carefree young man who relentlessly pursues his heart’s desire. This leads him on an adventure to a completely unfamiliar territory. On this journey, he not only finds love, but uncovers a truth that steers his destiny in a different direction.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Best Feature Film – National Film Awards India 2016


Blanka by Kohki Hasei – Italy, Japan, Philippines | 2015 – 75 min.

11-year old Blanka survives alone in Manila begging and stealing from tourists. She dreams of buying a mom. But she has to make countless efforts in order to collect enough money. She meets Peter, a blind street musician, who teaches Blanka how to sing. Concerned with Blanka‘s well-being however, Peter decides to take her to an orphanage, something which, when she finds out, makes her run away, and face the dangers of the streets once again.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Venice 2015, Busan 2015, Calcutta 2015, Göteborg 2016
Lanterna Magica Award – Venice 2015

for the love of a man

For the Love of a man by Rinku Kalsy – India | 2015 – 82 min.

Men from various generations alter their lives, sell their belongings, and place fandom above their families in devotion to an iconic South Indian superstars. The documentary shows the extent of their dedication to their idols.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Venice 2015, Dubai 2015, Mumbai 2015


Interrogation by Vetrimaaran – India | 2015 – 106 min.

Four immigrants are arrested by the police, tortured and forced to admit to a crime they have no knowledge of. When all hope seems to be lost, a policeman from their hometown speaks on their behalf at the court hearing, setting them free. The policeman asks for a return favour and the boys oblige, oblivious to the ill fate that awaits them. As they unwittingly bear witness to a political treason, the system seeks to silence them- at any cost. But one of them is determined to be heard.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Amnesty International Italia Award – Veneţia 2015

Island City

Island City by Ruchika Oberoi – India | 2015 – 111 min.

Three comic-dramatic stories set in Mumbai. The first one is about a middle-aged man who wins the office ‘Fun Committee Award’, which entitles him to a whole day full of fun. He is most reluctant to leave the safety of his cubicle but he has to. A domineering family father and a woman facing the challenges of a repetitive existence are the protagonists of the other stories.
(This films is in Competition)

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Venetia 2015 – Giornate degli Autori – Varsovia 2015, Stockholm 2015
Fedeora Award for Best Director of a Debut Film – Venetia 2015 – Giornate degli Autori


Loev by Sudhanshu Saria – India | 2015 – 90 min.

When Wall Street broker Jai wants to put some pleasure into his 48-hour business trip to Mumbai, his young friend Sahil drops everything, including his reckless boyfriend Alex, to help him execute the perfect getaway. But their trip into the hills and canyons of Maharashtra takes a sudden turn, making them each examine what love means to them.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Tallinn 2015, SXSW 2015, Guadalajara 2015


Ludo by Q, Nikon – India | 2015 – 88 min.

Four teenagers decide to spend one fateful night in the big city. Horny and broke, they go hide inside a gigantic shopping mall. But they are not alone, an old couple appear from nowhere, and a night of terror begins. It’s a game. Simple but deadly. They call it Ludo.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Sitges 2015, Fantasia 2015, Chicago 2015, Belgrad 2016, Singapore 2016
Best Film – Belgrad 2016

Man on high heels

Man on High heels by Jang Jin – South Korea | 2014 – 125 min.

Ji-wook is a detective who would stop at nothing to catch criminals. However, despite his perfectly masculine appearance, Ji-wook struggles with a secret desire to be a woman. At last, Ji-wook decides to get a sex change. However, a gang Ji-wook had arrested plots revenge against him. While Ji-wook resigns and secretly dreams of transforming into a real woman, people close to him start to get killed.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Vancouver 2014, Rotterdam 2015

Right now Wrong then

Right now, Wrong Then by Hong Sang-soo – South Korea | 2015 – 121 min.

By mistake, film director Ham Chun-su arrives in Suwon a day early and has time to kill before his screening the next day. He stops by a restored, old palace and meets a painter named Yoon Hee-jung. They spend time together visiting her studio, having dinner, spending time drinking with Hee-jung’s friends and they end up growing close to each other. But when Chun-su is asked if he is married, he has no choice but to reveal that he is, deeply disappointing Hee-jung…

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Locarno 2015, Toronto 2015, Hamburg 2015, Londra 2015, Tokyo 2015, Rotterdam 2016 Istanbul 2016
Golden Leopard, Best Actor – Locarno 2015

Shadow behind the moon

Shadow Behind the moon by Jun Robles Lana – Philippines | 2015 – 121 min.

A political thriller that follows the fragile friendship of a couple, who are suspected communists, with a military man. What starts as a night of playing cards slowly escalates into a terrifying struggle for survival when deep secrets are revealed threatening to destroy everyone.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Karlovy Vary 2015, Hamburg 2015, Singapore 2015, Kerala 2015

Their Distance

Their Distance by Rikyia Imaizumi – Japan | 2015 – 106 min.

Young Leon works as an apprentice shoe repairman, and avoids contact with other people. One afternoon, he comes across a drunk woman named Suna sleeping on a park bench, and for some reason finds himself unable to forget her. Leon and Suna are only two of the seven characters in Rikiya Imaizuma’s film about the complexity of feelings.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Tokyo 2015


Treacherous by Min Kyu-dong – South Korea | 2015 – 124 min.
The year is 1504, mid-point of Joseon Dynasty. Tyrannical king Yeonsan-gun orders that the most beautiful girls in the country to be brought to the palace and trained for his carnal pleasures. Defeating all competitors, beautiful Dan-hee manages to get selected to bed the king, but she doesn’t plan to give him only pleasure…

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Blue Dragon Award for Best New Actress (Lee Yoo-young) – Blue Dragon Awards 2015

Sion Sono Retrospective

Be sure to share

Be sure to share by Sion Sono – Japan | 2009 – 108 min.

The cancer-affected body does not show any longer the past strength of Shiro’s father. What keeps the family going is the slightest hope they find in his same clear consciousness. Facing the death of his father, the son starts to realize what his old man has really meant in his life, and starts to enjoy their time together. One day, however, Shiro learns he too has cancer. And his condition is worse than his father’s…

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Montreal 2009

Guilty of Romance

Guilty of Romance by Sion Sono – Japan | 2011 – 112 min.

Izumi is married to a famous romantic novelist but their life seems just a simple repetition without romance. One day she decides to follow her desires and accepts to be a naked model that fakes sex in front of the camera. Soon she meets a mentor and starts selling her body to strangers but at home, she is still the wife she is supposed to be. A brutally murdered body is found in the love hotels district. The police tries to understand what happened.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Cannes 2011 (Quinzaine des Réalisateurs), Karlovy Vary 2011, Helsinki 2011, Pusan 2011, Hong Kong 2012

Land of hope

Land of Hope by Sion Sono – Japan | 2012 – 132 min.

An earthquake causes a nuclear crisis in a fictive Japanese prefecture. In wake of the disaster, the members of the Ono family who reside just outside the border of the mandatory evacuation zone face uncertainty.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Toronto 2012, Chicago 2012, Salonic 2012, Stockholm 2012, Mar del Plata 2012, CPH PIX 2013
NETPAC Award – Toronto 2012

Love and peace

Love and Peace by Sion Sono – Japan | 2015 – 117 min.

Ryoichi works for a company that sells musical instrument components. A failed rock musician, his life is frustrating and miserable. He likes a colleague, Yuko, but he is too timid to talk to her. One day Ryoichi finds a little pet turtle for sale. Their eyes meet and he immediately know that the turtle is the missing piece in his life.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Beijing 2015, Fantasia 2015, Londra 2015, Toronto After Dark 2015, Mar del Plata 2015, Belgrad 2016
Audience Award – Fantasia 2015

Love Exposure

Love Exposure by Sion Sono – Japan | 2008 – 237 min.

When the sub-leader of a religious cult known as Zero kidnaps his father and Yoko, the girl of his dreams, teenager Yu is prepared to do anything to save those dear to him. Will Yu be able to save Yoko? Will Yoko ever realize Yu love her?

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Berlin 2009 (Forum), BAFICI 2009, Hong Kong 2009, Karlovy Vary 2009, Sarajevo 2009
FIPRESCI Award (Forum), Caligari Film Award – Berlin 2009

Noriko Dinner Table

Noriko’s Dinner Table by Sion Sono – Japan | 2004 – 158 min.

Noriko is an ordinary 17 year-old girl. She couldn’t help but feel discomfort with her ordinary life with her family in a suburban town. One day, she discovers an interesting site on the internet where teenage girls from all over Japan gathered. There, Noriko for the first time in her life, feels that she is being understood by others. Noriko runs away from home to seek a new home in Tokyo.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Karlovy Vary 2005, Hong Kong 2006, Atena 2009
Don Quijote Award – Karlovy Vary 2005

Shinjuku Swan

Shinjuku Swan by Sion Sono – Japan | 2015 – 139 min.

Young Tatsuhiko is just another lost soul in the streets of Shinjuku, Tokyo. He wanders into Kabukicho, Shinjuku’s infamous red-light district, and bumps into a group of thugs. Saved by beautiful Mako, Tatsuhiko discovers he has a new purpose in life.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Fantasia 2015, Torino 2015

Suicide Club

Suicide Club by Sion Sono – Japan | 2002 – 99 min.

Tokyo, 2001. 54 high school girls commit suicide by jumping in front of a train from the platform of Shinjuku station. Consequently, a number of group suicides take place throughout Tokyo. Detective Kuroda must find out whether there is someone behind these tragedies.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Tokyo 2001, Rotterdam 2002, BAFICI 2002, Hamburg 2002, Chicago 2002, Fantasia 2003
Jury Prize for Most Ground-Breaking Film – Fantasia 2003


Tag by Sion Sono – Japan | 2015 – 86 min.

Two buses filled with jubilant schoolgirls are rolling down a country road, and Mitsuko is the only one who is sitting calmly, writing poetry. When she bends down to pick up a pencil dropped by her friend, something unthinkable happens: both vehicles are cut in half by an invisible entity. Standing amidst dozens of severed bodies, the young girl is suddenly being chased by a homicidal wind whose clutches she barely escapes. When she finally makes it back to school, Mitsuko learns something truly shocking.

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Fantasia 2015, Sitges 2015, Toronto After Dark 2015, Chicago 2015, Torino 2015, Belgrad 2015
Best Film, Best Actress (Reina Triendl) – Fantasia 2015

Virgin Psychics

Virgin Psychics by Sion Sono – Japan | 2015 – 114 min.

Yoshiro, a high school student, has never got a spotlight in his life and spends his days aimlessly. What only shines in his life is Sae, a girl at his school. Even if he is completely ignored by her, he still dreams of becoming her true love in the future. One day, he finds himself having a mind-reading psychic power. Does this ability improve his chances with Sae?

TRAILER (it will open in another window)

Awards & Festivals:
Busan 2015, Sitges 2015, BAFICI 2016

For more information please visit the official website of the festival here: Transilvania International Film Festival

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