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This Cannes favorite starring Isabelle Huppert is strange and beautiful....
Kino / 89 Minutes / 2012 / Unrated / Street Date: April 9, 2013
There is a sweet-natured feel to Hong Sang-soo’s In Another Country, like a particularly good cup of coffee or an afternoon nap. It isn’t the deepest film in the world, nor is it particularly nuanced in its construction, but thanks to Isabelle Huppert’s multiple performances (she plays three different characters) and some lovely cinematography, the movie ends up being an agreeable travelogue of sorts, a movie that plays more like a campfire story personified than a legitimately cinematic two-hour movie.
Each of the stories here takes place in a sleepy South Korean seaside town – again, they don’t interact as much as they serve as calls and responses to one another. In one, Huppert plays a filmmaker who becomes the object of desire for Kwon Hae-hyo (an artist who kinda sorta has a pregnant wife at home). In the second installment, it’s Isabelle who’s philandering – she takes Moon Sung-keun on as a lover – and then things turn sour in the movie’s final section, where Huppert plays a newly-divorced woman looking for solace in her travels that never quite come.
In Another Country is breezy, sometimes funny, always beautifully constructed. After it reaches its surprisingly early end – the movie is less than an hour and a half long – one gets the impression that all its various shards of loveplay and investigation of the human spirit don’t add up to all that much, but there’s such a warm and inviting aura to the movie that even with its shortcomings, In Another Country is diverting escapist fare.