Korea picks ‘Juvenile Offender’ as Oscars hopeful

'Juvenile Offender' Korean film, Oscars contender

Tough love drama hopes to correct Korea’s deficit in foreign-language race

HONG KONG — “Juvenile Offender,” a tough mother and son drama featuring a youngster released from a correctional facility, has been selected to represent South Korea in the foreign-language category of the Academy Awards.

Directed by Kang Yi-kwan, the film made a powerful impression at the Tokyo festival in November last year where it won the Special Jury award and the best actor prize for Seo Young-joo.

News of the selection was carried on the website of the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) and announced in a press statement by the film’s distributor and backer, Timestory Group.

“’Juvenile Offender’ stood out in terms of the detailed directing, it was a universal yet Korean story, and the film was complete to the point where it was hard to point out any flaws,” the selection committee was quoted as saying.

After release from a lockup for teenagers, a youngster is reunited with the mother he did not know he ever had. But the cycle of misery seems set to continue when the boy learns his teenage girlfriend had been pregnant and was forced to give up her child.

“Offender” had its premiere in Toronto last year and enjoyed a Korean commercial release in Nov 2012.

At the beginning of August KOFIC revealed that it had selected nine films for a shortlist. Others included “The Berlin File,” “A Werewolf Boy,” “The Terror Live,” “The Face Reader,” “Jiseul,” “Mai Ratima,” “Montage” and “National Security.”

South Korea has had a huge impact of cinema in Asia for more than a decade and submitted powerful titles including “Pieta,” “Mother,” “Secret Sunshine” and Kim Ki-duk’s “Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter… And Spring” but none have ever received a nomination.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading