Box office

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Jun 20, 2014 - 19:27
  • Updated : Jun 20, 2014 - 19:27

Transformers: Age of Extinction (U.S.)

Opening June 25
Action, SF. Directed by Michael Bay

This fourth installment of the “Transformers” film series takes place four years after the invasion of Chicago that left the city torn apart in “Transformers: Dark of Side of the Moon.” An old mechanic (Mark Wahlberg) discovers that his old semi-truck is a deactivated robot, Optimus Prime. Once the robot’s survival is known, a shadowy group reveals itself in an attempt to take advantage of the robots to control the direction of history. Optimus Prime and other Autobots rise to fight against the challenges threatening the humanity. Michael Bay teams up with Steven Spielberg to produce their fourth series.

Wadjda (Saudi Arabia, Germany)

Opened June 19
Drama. Directed by Haifaa Al Mansour

Wadjda (Waad Mohammed) is a brave and adventurous 10-year-old girl living in Saudi Arabia. She wants to buy a green bicycle to race against her friend Abdullah (Abdullrahman Algohani), but her mother won’t let her, fearing a backlash from a conservative society that sees bicycles as dangerous to girls’ virtue. So Wadjda decides to raise the funds by herself. She enters a Koran recitation competition at her school for the cash prize. It will not be an easy competition for Wadjda, known as the troublemaker at school, as she has to compete with pious and studious students. But she is determined to fight for her dreams. Haifaa Al Mansour, the first female director in Saudi Arabia, received a number of international awards for this film.

Gyeongju (Korea)

Opened June 12
Drama. Directed by Zhang Lu

Choi Hyun (Park Hae-il) is a Northeast Asian Studies professor at Peking University. He visits Korea after a long hiatus when his friend passes away. During the short trip, he visits the ancient capital city of Gyeongju in North Gyeongsang Province, after remembering a painting on a wall of a teahouse that he saw seven years ago. When he arrives at the teahouse in Gyeongju, he encounters the beautiful and mysterious owner Gong Yoon-hee (Shin Min-ah). At first Yoon-hee thinks Hyun is a pervert due to a misunderstanding; however, as they spend time together eating, drinking and strolling around the city, they slowly grow closer.

High Heel (Korea)

Opened June 4
Noir, action. Directed by Jang Jin

Yoon Ji-wook (Cha Seung-won) is a homicide detective whose macho looks match his undisputed ability to nab violent criminals. He is revered as a legend in the police force and at the same time feared among the mafia for his brutality in cracking down on crime. But deep inside, his identity is quite different. Ji-wook has desired to become a woman ever since his teenage days. He tries to suppress the inner desire -- in vain. He finally reaches the point where he makes up his mind to live as a woman. The flick is the first attempt at action-noir by director Jang Jin, known for his maverick style.

A Hard Day (Korea)

Opened May 29
Crime, action. Directed by Kim Seong-hoon

Ko Gun-su (Lee Sun-kyun) is a corrupt detective who receives a divorce notice from his wife on the day his mother passes away. On the way to the funeral, he drives recklessly and causes a hit-and-run accident, killing a man. He tries to conceal the accident by hiding the corpse in his deceased mother’s coffin, but someone has been watching him all along. Director Kim Seong-hoon, in his second film, was invited to this year’s Cannes Film Festival to premier the flick as part of the Director’s Fortnight program.