Every year the expat film community in South Korea grows larger and raises the bar higher. 2013 will be no exception.
Amiss is a feature film shot in and around Seoul. So far it’s been a yearlong journey and it’s still in full swing. Principle photography started at the end of September and wrapped mid-December.
Amiss is an independently produced film written and directed by Raoul Dyssell and William Sonbuchner about a Korean father distraught by the death of his daughter who vows to seek revenge on the person he deems responsible.
It’s not just a film shot in Korea, it’s a film that showcases and embraces controversial cultural taboos in Asia.
A large percentage of expats living in Korea are – or have been at one point – teachers, including the cast and crew who can all relate to the film’s exploration of those cultural issues.
One of the most publicized yet taboo parts of Asian culture is suicide, a subject which is openly approached in Amiss. While expats aren’t likely to come to Asia consciously interested in this issue, it does become something that’s brought to light while they’re here. The immense pressure on students to do well academically, on fathers to be highly successful providers, on mothers to nurture children to be as close to perfect as possible; all of these societal pigeonholes collectively contribute. However, Amiss offers a new perspective that is sure to have viewers talking further than just statistics.
The film is of the mystery/suspense genre meaning it has plenty of action, but is also a mental and emotional roller coaster. Each character is built on recognizable cultural personas and bears issues that most people face at some point in their lives.
Amiss is a delicate balance between showing something extraordinary and showing something that people can relate to, and it seems that this film is going to tread that line very well.
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Written by Heather Yzaguirre
Photography by Mike Beech