As the Korean peninsula falls into the hands of Japanese imperialists and countless Koreans seek refuge in the vast wilderness of Manchuria, a determined thief, a cold-blooded hitman, and a mysterious bounty hunter all vie for an elusive map that could lead them to a buried treasure from the Qing Dynasty. Set during the 1930s, this riotous and rollicking Sergio Leone-inspired Korean Western is a stylish, genuinely fun and thoroughly action-packed film of truly epic proportions.
The Good, the Bad, the Weird | Directed by Kim Jee-woon | 2009 | South Korea | 2hr 7 mins
The International Westerns Mini-Season is programmed and introduced by Lee Broughton of University of Leeds. These three special screenings are kindly supported by the Leverhulme Trust.
The Western is the quintessential film genre. Ever-present throughout the history of cinema, its pervasive nature means that even those who don’t choose to watch Westerns regularly are fully familiar with the genre’s core iconography and key narrative concerns. While the production of Westerns went into decline during the 1970s, a succession of internationally renowned directors have been able to successfully place recognizable elements of the genre within films that are set on wild frontiers that lay far beyond the American West. This mini season showcases three classic examples of this trend.