Indepenedent Film Series: Daytime Drinking (New York Premiere)
Tuesday, January 12, 2010 at 7 PM
(54 Varick Street, NYC)
NOH Young-seok, Drama, Grade 15, 2008, 115 minutes
One of the rudest things you can do in Korea is turn down a drink. DAYTIME DRINKING is a rapidly escalating farce that tweaks the humiliation-meter up and up and up and up as Hyuk-Jin, newly broken up with his girlfriend, finds himself bullied into drinking an infinite amount of soju in a series of progressively more surreal situations. The debut film from NOH Young-Seok, Drinking became a word-of-mouth hit in Korea and has played dozens of film festivals around the world. With a vibe somewhere between Jim Jarmusch’s Stranger than Paradise and Broken Lizard’s Beerfest the only thing dry about this flick is its humor.
After breaking up with his girlfriend, Hyuk-jin hits a bar in Seoul with his friends. Totally drunk, they decide to take a trip to a festival in Joengseon, a small town out in the Korean countryside, to console Hyuk-jin's broken heart. They agree to leave first thing the next day.
However, when Hyuk-Jin gets off the bus the next afternoon, he finds out he's the only one that made the trip. He calls his friends, but they all had horrible hangovers and completely forgot. Worse, he quickly finds that the festival they were headed to was weeks ago, and the tiny beach town is shuttered- the shops aren't open, there are no other tourists there, and the beach is freezing cold. Hyuk-jin is truly, honestly, alone.
When one of his friends suggests Hyuk-jin wait for them at a hostel run by an old pal from college, he agrees. He seeks it out, not realizing that not only is the place he's sleeping in not the right hotel in the slightest, but that this is just the beginning of a very strange adventure.
Over the next few days, Hyuk-jin finds himself in a series of increasingly bizarre situations, most of them aided by the fact that, due to his respect for the etiquette of Korean drinking culture, Hyuk-jin finds it difficult to refuse a drink when someone offers him one. With his friends still saying they'll come, but not showing up, and his wallet gone, Hyuk-jin has to figure out how get out of what must surely be the world's worst hangover, get back to Seoul, and end his drunken odyssey.
Tribeca Cinema (54 Varick Street New York, NY 10013, Tel: 212-941-2001)