Bong Joon-ho is a damn hit machine, just a very deliberate, slow working hit machine (not all machines are fast). In 20 years, he only has a handful of feature films on his resume, but they include the likes of Mother, The Host, Memories of Murder, and of course 2014’s Snowpiercer. We waited a long time to see this last one, largely due to the extended back and forth between Bong and The Weinstein Company, who demanded significant cuts that would have hamstrung the film, but it was worth every second. The South Korean director recently did an extended Q&A session at the Film Society at Lincoln Center in New York to discuss the movie, and you can watch the whole event right here. It’s definitely worth the hour or so investment.
For the uninitiated, Snowpiercer tells the story of a world engulfed in a new global ice age. The last remnants of society cling to life in the cramped confines of a train that endlessly circles the frozen wastes, powered by a perpetual motion engine. Within these confines, a rigid, vicious class divide forms. The poor live in squalor at the rear, while the wealthy exist in opulence near the front. After 18 years, and numerous failed attempts, the oppressed rise up and fight their way towards the engine. It’s harrowing, well acted—especially by Chris Evans and Tilda Swinton, both doing career best work—violent, strange, and emotional.