The 26th Busan International Film Festival Opening Film Heaven: To the Land of Happiness Selected

Published : Thursday, September 2, 2021, 10:26 am
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Heaven: To the Land of Happiness directed by Im Sang-soo was selected as the opening film for the 26th Busan International Film Festival, which will be held from October 6 (Wed) to 15 (Fri).

Heaven: To the Land of Happiness is a festive and pastoral road movie in which two men – “Inmate 203” (Choi Min-sik), who escaped from jail, and “Nam-sik” (Park Hae-il), who coincidentally joins 203's trip – get their hands on a large amount of money by chance and embark on a journey together, dreaming of a luxurious ending to their lives. The harmony created from Im Sang-soo's outstanding directorial power and excellent acting by Choi Min-sik and Park Hae-il ultimately turns the film into an inquiry about happiness that is warm and beautiful like no other.

This film, which was selected for the Official Selection 2020 of the Cannes Film Festival, is the newest feature presented by Im Sang-soo, six years after Intimate Enemies (2015), as well as the fourth film by Im to receive an invitation to the Cannes Film Festival.

Actor Choi Min-sik plays "Inmate No. 203," who risks a passionate escape from the ordinary in search of his last moment of happiness, while Park Hae-il takes on the role of Nam-sik, who unwittingly tags along "203" on his special journey. Actors Choi Min-sik and Park Hae-il, who are joining forces on the silver screen for the first time, add a fascinating charm to this film with fresh energy and resonance.

In addition, Youn Yuh-jung, who was the first Korean talent to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, flaunts her acting chops as the glamorous and unique Madam Youn. The brilliant performances by amazing supporting actors Cho Han-cheul, Lim Sung-jae, and Lee El shine as well.

[IM Sang-Soo]

After making a memorable debut with the film Girls' Night Out (1998), Im Sang-soo solidified his position as a director representing Korea through topical works that get to the heart of Korean society, including: A Good Lawyer's Wife (2003), The President's Last Bang (2005), The Housemaid (2010), and Intimate Enemies (2015). Following his foray into the Cannes Film Festival Competition Section in 2010 with the film The Housemaid (2010), which is a remake of the eponymous 1960 film by director Kim Ki-young, Im was invited to the Cannes Film Festival competition section in 2012 with The Taste of Money and was selected for the Cannes Official Selection 2020 with Heaven: To the Land of Happiness, a film invited to the Busan International Film Festival to be the opening film.

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