First up was Women on the Rise: South Korean Cinema. A series of 3 short-ish films:
PRAGMA: Two young women, who loved each other in high school, were torn apart by the school's anti-gay policy.
170 BUCKS FOR A CAB, ONE RIDE, ONE NIGHT: Based on a true story, a couple of drunk girls try to figure out why one cab ride cost so much money, even getting the police involved.
A LETTER FOR SANG-AH: Single mother aren't common in Korea. At least, they weren't a few decades ago. Most unwed mothers had to give their kids up for adoption, which leaves a hole in the lives of both mother and child. This letter hopes to bring them back together and fill that hole.
Then I caught the feature, HALF WIDOW, a surprisingly touching narrative based on true stories. That story starts off as a love story. Man and woman meet, they fall in love, they marry, they're about to have a child. Life is pretty good. But they live in the disputed and conflict-torn Kashmir region. So, the husband is just taken away by the authorities. And the stress causes a miscarriage. And the police deny he even exists. And when the wife and her brother start protesting, the brother is taken, too. A powerful, heart-wrenching story anchored by a fantastic performance by Neelofar Hamid, who shows the heights of love and the depths of sorrow.
Total Running Time: 168 minutes
My Total Minutes: 479,333