By Ryan Keating-Lambert

From May 10 – 14, Prague’s magnificent Kino Lucerna will host the Taiwanese Film Festival. The programme this year focuses on the films of award-winning director Mong-Hong Chung, including his new film Godspeed.

Although the Taiwanese film scene has received international attention from their unique cinematography, alluring island landscapes and underlying themes of youth and childhood, the scene is still relatively unknown to Czech audiences, so get in there while you can.

Check out some of our recommendations below and visit the official website for tickets and more information. All films have both English and Czech subtitles.

Godspeed (2016)

The latest by acclaimed director Mong-Hong Chung, the beating heart of the Taiwanese film industry, is a crime comedy that sees a drug dealer stupidly get into the wrong taxi, resulting in a harrowing hostage situation involving an innocent driver and a mob on a murderous rampage. Godspeed is a must see to set the mood for the festival on its opening night.

Screenings

Wednesday – 10/05 – 18:30 – Kino Lucerna

The Fourth Portrait (2010)

Another film by Mong-Hong Chung, about the turbulent upbringing of young boy Xiang, who’s forced to live with his estranged mother after the death of his father. Xiang retreats into a private world of art and drawing in order to cope with his new environment and the strangers in it. A classic example of Taiwanese New Wave cinema and sure to be another festival highlight.

Screenings

Thursday – 11/04 – 20:45 – Kino Lucerna

Hang in There, Kids (2016)

Three kids raised in the middle of nowhere make their way to Taipei in an attempt to make their beloved school teacher a famous singer. A sometimes adventurous road movie layered with family-based drama.

Screenings

Friday – 12/05 – 18:30 – Kino Lucerna

Step Back to Glory (2013)

A student leaves her countryside home to go to school and pursue a career in sports. Though scared of the change, she finds comfort in joining a tug of war team and identifies with her teammates. A wonderfully vivid coming-of-age story.

Screenings

Saturday – 13/05 – 18:30 – Kino Lucerna

Soul (2013)

This brilliant horror / thriller by Mong-Hong Chung will close the festival and takes the eerie conventions of demonic possession to the mountains of Taiwan. A beautifully shot film with a small town ‘Twin Peaks’ kind of vibe to it.

Screenings

Sunday – 14/05 – 18:30 – Kino Lucerna

Visit the official website for tickets and more information. All films have both English and Czech subtitles.

Photo: TIFF

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