What’s Happening This Week in Toronto

This week – September 10th-16th – is shaping up to be one of the busiest weeks for Korean events in Toronto this year. But it’s not just a week full of Korean events and films, it’s a week full of fabulous and fun events. And since I’m planning on attending them all… I’m simply going to be in Korean cultural heaven. ^^ Seriously, I’m super excited about this week.

Oh, and did I mention that my birthday falls in the middle of it. 😛 As a great way to get in the mood for fun, a Korean friend and I celebrated with a joint birthday party this past weekend and lots of our wonderful friends came out to celebrate with us. Thanks guys, you rock!

Jang Dong Gun at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)

If you’ve been reading for a while then you probably know how much I loved A Gentleman’s Dignity (신사의 품격) and a big part of that was Jang Dong Gun (장동건). He is – and has been for quite some time – one of my favourite Korean actors. And he’s here in Toronto for the Gala presentation of his latest film – the Chinese film, Dangerous Liaisons. Love him as much as me? Then you’ll want to see him walk the red carpet before the screening of the film at Roy Thompson Hall (film starts at 9:30pm).

Korean Films at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)

This year there are five Korean films screening at TIFF (as well as two documentaries on North Korea and a North Korean feature film, the first to be financed with Western money). I’m going to concentrate on the Korean films but if you want an overview of all eight, check out TIFF’s article.

A Werewolf Boy (늑대소년) – A love story directed by Jo Sung-Hee about a girl who meets a feral boy and they fall in love.

  • Tues. Sept. 11 at Bloor Hot Docs Cinema @ 9:00 PM
  • Thurs. Sept. 13 at Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 6 @ 9:15 PM
  • Sun. Sept. 16 at Scotiabank 11 @ 11:45 AM

Juvenile Offender (범죄소년) – It’s directed by Kang Yi-Kwan about the life of a 16-year-old juvenile offender and his troubled family.

  • Tues. Sept. 11 at Scotiabank 4 @ 9:45 PM
  • Wed. Sept. 12 at Jackman Hall (AGO) @ 7:00 PM
  • Fri. Sept. 14 at Jackman Hall (AGO) @ 4:00 PM

Pieta (피에타) – Directed by Kim Ki-duk, it just won the Golden Lion at the 69th Venice International Film Festival. Pieta tells the story of a brutal loan sharks and a woman who says she is his mother.

  • Wed. Sept. 12 at Scotiabank 4 @ 8:30 PM
  • Fri. Sept. 14 at Scotiabank 9 @ 4:15 PM
  • Sun. Sept. 16 at Scotiabank 4 @ 9:00 AM

The Thieves (도둑들) – It’s a star-laden heist film directed by Choi Dong Hun and one of the top grossing films ever in Korea.

  • Thurs. Sept. 13 at Ryerson Theatre @ 9:00 PM
  • Fri. Sept. 14 at Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 9 @ 7:30 PM
  • Sun. Sept. 16 at Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 10 @ 5:15 PM

In Another Country (다른나라에서) – This film directed by Hong Sang-Soo tells the story of three different women, all named Anne and all played by French actress Isabelle Huppert, with the common elements throughout being infidelity and a lifeguard.

  • Thurs. Sept. 13 at TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 @ 6:45 PM
  • Fri. Sept. 14 at Scotiabank 1 @ 6:30 PM
  • Sun. Sept. 16 at TIFF Bell Lightbox 2 @ 6:30 PM

Lee Juck Standing Live presented by JUO Entertainment

Friday night will see another K-pop concert in Toronto. This time we have the honour of seeing Lee Juck, who has had both a solo career and one as a member of Panic, perform. Tickets are still on sale. For more information, check out my earlier article on Lee Juck.

Kollaboration Toronto 2012

Every year Kollaboration puts on a fabulous talent show in Toronto, showcasing some of the wonderful and various talents that we have in this city. This year’s show will be no different (and I can definitely attest to this as I’ve seen two of the performers/groups perform before). Tickets are still on sale. For more information, check out my earlier article on Kollaboration Toronto 2012.

Korean Harvest Festival

Every year there is a fun Korean Harvest Festival in Toronto at Mel Lastman Square (or at least the last couple of festivals were there). This year the Korean Harvest Festival will be on Saturday September 15th (from 12 noon until 9:30pm) and Sunday September 16th (from 2pm until 9pm). This festival celebrates Korean Thanksgiving, which is known as Hangawi (한가위), and is traditionally celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar (usually mid-September to early-October). For more information, please check out their website.

Pop! Goes the World!

It’s time for another Pop Goes the World K-pop/J-pop/Electropop/Chartpop dance party. Get your dancing shoes on because VJ Gee and Special Guest DJ Jaybe Park are going to keep your feet moving all night long. Party starts at 10pm at the Annex Wreck Room (right across from Bathurst Station). This is a 19+ event so don’t forget your ID. $10 at the door.

Is it any wonder I’m so excited with all these fabulous events happening this week in Toronto. Who needs sleep with all this fun? ^^ Are you planning on attending any of the films, events or festivals this week? Don’t forget to say “Hi” if you see me. Can’t wait to watch Pieta on my birthday!

Cindy Zimmer

Live life to the fullest everyday – this is a the philosophy I try to live by and it’s taken me on many adventures. I write about Korean culture from a non-Korean perspective as the editor/founder of ATK Magazine and I’m the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Toronto Korean Film Festival (TKFF). Previously, I ran a Korean-English language exchange group (in Toronto) for 3 years to stay connected to my three years living in Korea as an English teacher. I love music, film, food and sports and write about 3 of the 4.

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