The second edition of the Asia Pacific Film Festival (APFF) opens its doors at the end of the month, offering an interesting selection of titles from around the region.
The festival runs a week ahead of the Japanese Film Festival in Auckland. Both are screening Hideki Takeuchi’s Thermae Romae, although it’s unclear if the APFF is screening both parts 1 and 2.
The ten APFF titles selected come from China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and NZ, which – as it did last year – supplies the festival’s opening title. Last year David Blyth’s Ghost Bride opened the event; this year David Gould’s The Cure does the honours, featuring Antonia Prebble who’s busy at present in the just-commenced Westside Story. Also screening on opening night is Litao Qu’s romance Kung Fu Angels, featuring Karina Ng.
The other locally-shot title in the line-up is Devesh Singh’s cross-cultural romance Urban Turban, which held premiere screenings earlier this year.
None of the Asian titles really aspire to arthouse credentials with the exception of the Thai selection, biopic The Last Executioner. The most entertaining of the bunch is almost certainly Dong-Hoon Choi’s The Thieves, a twisty-turny heist romp of impressive proportions and locations which broke Korean box office records on release back in 2012.
The APFF has its opening night event at Auckland’s Bruce Mason Centre on 30 October. The festival runs at Rialto, Newmarket, 31 October – 5 November.