From South Korea, a patient film straddling the line between drama and black comedy centered around a young woman who has ditched her current living quarters in order to get by. Miso is a great character; her justifications for giving up what common sense would dictate to be basic necessities is amusing and endearing. She is both strong-willed and woefully vulnerable.
The film follows her as she seeks temporary room and board from former bandmates whom she once made music with in her younger years. She visits each one in turn, with varying results, but each time the interaction reveals some societal problem or highlights a kind of ‘Us VS Them’ difference in values. Often these are associated with aging, raising conflict within Miso, who has no desire to change. Even as the film slyly digs beneath the surface at some darker themes, it is funny throughout, even hilarious at times. With a poignant conclusion, MICROHABITAT evokes a range of emotions and is a great candidate to win this year’s Tiger Uncaged competition.
MICROHABITAT is being shown on Tuesday, July 10 at 6:30 pm as part of the 2018 New York Asian Film Festival, and will be screened with an appearance and Q & A by with director Teon Go-woon and actor Ahn Jae-hong. Visit the NYAFF homepage for tickets and information.