Finally I’ve seen the movie in Haqyunus siggie!
And, I loved The Day He Arrives (Hong, 2011). It’s my first film by Hong Sang-soo so I guess others will be better versed in what his games with variations of the same events mean, but they took me completely off-guard and I loved them. To me, it was easy to make sense of a narrative that seems to be springing from someone in a kind-of stand-by vital situation, someone who’s a film director and imagines and re-imagines life, either how he would have liked it to be, how it was or how it might be be or have been. That sense of possibility (OMG, The Hours quote) fits to a man in the protagonist’s situation and creates a rich tapestry of coincidences and small acts that may or may not alter much what ends up happening.
But Hong never lets the theoretical take the place of the “real” (not in the sense of what truly happened, but in the sense of what’s actually happening on screen, regardless if it’s imagination or fact) and the characters and their situations are always compelling, interesting and genuine. All these iterations are fascinating and moving on their own, which leaves you pondering about what would be the most desired outcome in the way the protagonist does.
I loved the way the characters are defined, their fresh dialogue, the relations between them, the situations, the acting, the stark but evocative and moody cinematography, the zooms in and out that focus each possibility in a certain character. Everything rings true and touching. In a way, I was reminded of Rohmer? And, I also loved Hong’s strange humor.
A really nice discovery, now I want to see more films by Hong.