If you’re into your foreign films, Park Chan-wook is undoubtedly going to be familiar name. He has several classics under his belt, including the fantastic Oldboy.
His new film, The Handmaiden, has smashed box office records in South Korea as it brought in 1.8 million people in just a week. The film has beaten previous record holders, Deadpool (1.7 million) and Inside Men (1.6 million).
It also knocked X-Men: Apocalypse down to a number two spot, which is no small feat.
The Handmaiden is an adaptation of the Welsh novel Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. The film is set in Korea when the country was under Japanese colonial rule, whereas the original book was set in the Victorian era.
The film centres around Kim-Min Hee, a wealthy heiress, who falls in love with pick pocket Sook-Hee (played by Kim Tae-Ri), who is hired to seize the heiress’ fortune. The film competed in the Cannes Film Festival for the Palme d’Or and Queer Palm awards, as well as receiving rave reviews.
A spokesperson for CJ Entertainment, who released The Handmaiden, had this to say: “Snowpiercer starred top global stars like Chris Evans and Tilda Swinton, which gave it more of an international appeal. So it’s doubly meaningful that ‘The Handmaiden’ attracted so many buyers in spite of the language barrier.”
I am a huge fan of Park Chan-wook’s works, and judging from the trailer below, we are truly in for an R-rated treat. Amazon have acquired the rights for US distribution of the film, so fingers crossed for a Western theatrical release.