42nd Istanbul Film Festival – Asian Presence 2023

We take a look at the Asian films that will be screened at the Istanbul Film Festival (Turkey) which will take place from April 7 – 18, 2023.

– Feature Film –

A Man by Kei Ishikawa – Japan | 2022 – 121 minutes

Akira works as a lawyer. One day, he meets with his former client Rie, who asks Akira to perform a background check on her late husband Daisuke. (IMDb)


Autobiography by Makbul Mubarak – Indonesia | 2022 – 115 minutes

A young man working as a housekeeper in an empty mansion. When its owner returns to start his mayoral election campaign, the young man bonds with him and defends him when his campaign is vandalized, setting off a chain of violence. (IMDb)


In Water by Hong Sang-soo – Korea | 2023 – 61 minutes

A young actor explores the surroundings, waits for the right light to emerge and watches the horizon from the coast. (IMDb)


Joyland by Saim Sadiq – Pakistan | 2022 – 126 minutes

The youngest son in a traditional Pakistani family takes a job as a backup dancer in a Bollywood-style burlesque and quickly becomes infatuated with the strong-willed trans woman who runs the show. (IMDb)


Next Sohee by July Jung – Korea | 2022 – 135 minutes

High school student Sohee starts job training at a call center, but she faces pressure of greedy company which leads to her death. Detective Oh Yu-jin, who has something in common with Sohee starts to follow traces to reveal the truth. (IMDb)


RRR (Rise Roar Revolt) by S.S. Rajamouli – India | 2022 – 186 minutes

A fictitious story about two legendary revolutionaries and their journey away from home before they started fighting for their country in the 1920s. (IMDb)


Walk Up by Hong Sang-soo – Korea | 2022 – 97 minutes

Byungsoo, a film director who goes with his daughter Jeongsu an aspiring interior designer, to a building owned by an old friend already established in the design field. She gives them a tour of the property, which includes a restaurant and cooking studio on the first two floors, her office in the basement, a residence on the third floor, and an artist’s studio at the top. The three of them chat and drink amicably until a business call pulls Byungsoo away. When he returns, it’s the same place, but a different time, and the building owner invites him up to the second floor. (IMDb)


– Short Films –

To Pick a Flower by Shireen Seno – Philippines, Japan | 2021 – 17 minutes

It centers around the formation of Kolambugan, a town established by an American businessman in the Philippines which takes its name from the tree species and grows prominently in the surrounding area. (IMDb)


Will You Look at Me by Shuli Huang – China | 2022 – 20 minutes

As a young Chinese filmmaker returns to his hometown in search for himself, a long due conversation with his mother dives the two of them into a quest for acceptance and love. (MUBI)


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