The Asian Angel アジアの天使

©2021 The Asian Angel Film Partners


Asian Film Award Best Director-winner Yuya Ishii returns with a film shot entirely in South Korea!
Aiming to combine the subtlety of Japanese and the power of Korean film, one of Asia’s leading young directors, Yuya Ishii, has brought together the cream of the South Korean film industry. The picture, with a 95-percent Korean cast and staff, was shot entirely in South Korea.

A stellar cast from Japan and South Korea
In the main male role as the writer who comes from Japan is Sosuke Ikematsu, often featured in Yuya Ishii films. Playing his brother is veteran Joe Odagiri. His love interest is Moon Choi, who won a number of Best New Actress awards for her performance in Anarchist from Colony (17), and a Best Actress Award from the Busan International Film Festival for Our Body (18). The cast also includes Min-Jae Kim, featured in Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula (20).

The cream of the South Korean film industry
The large South Korean crew includes Director of Photography Jongsun Kim, whose work includes The Journals of Musan (10), Alive (14), and Beautiful Days (19). Music is by Inyoung Park, whose scores include director Ki-duk Kim’s Pieta (14).


‘Seeing the world through your eyes, I might come to like it a little more.’
Aoki, a Japanese novelist, takes his son Manabu to Seoul, South Korea, to work with his brother Toru. Toru’s situation is not as he has described it, however, and Aoki ends up helping out in a dubious business conducted in a language he does not understand. Toru’s business partner soon disappears, leaving them without funds. Toru says he has another scheme, dealing in seaweed, and they board a train to the countryside.
Sol is a singer whose music is not selling. Her parents are long dead, and she supports her brother and sister. The president of her management company is her lover, but the company does not renew her contract and their relationship ends as well. Sol, her purpose in life lost, decides to go with her siblings to visit their parents’ grave. Aoki and his family are on the same train.
Toru has Aoki and Manabu leave the train at the same station as Sol and her family. He insists that they have dinner together. Sol’s manager appears, and there is an altercation in which Aoki takes her side. Sol’s brother Jung-woo then offers to give the three Japanese a ride in a truck he has borrowed to travel to the cemetery. As the trip goes on, the six start to get to know each other. Aoki, whose wife died of cancer, finds that the same thing happened to Sol’s mother. The two are attracted to each other, but differences of language and culture still remain; Aoki hesitates. ‘That’s why beer and love exist, to get you over that,’ says Toru, and Aoki goes out to tell Sol what he is really thinking.

■ 16th Osaka Asian Film Festival (2021)
 - Closing Film
■ 22nd Jeonju International Film Festival (2021)
 - Cinema Fest section
■ 24th Shanghai International Film Festival (2021)
 - Panorama, NEW FROM AUTEUR
■ 20th New York Asian Film Festival (2021)
 - Rising Star Award
■ Hiroshima International Film Festival (2021)
■ Japannual - Japanische Filmtage in Wien (2021)
■ Kaohshiung Film Festival (2022)
 - Panorama

Sosuke Ikematsu (池松壮亮), Moon Choi (チェ・ヒソ), Joe Odagiri (オダギリ ジョー)
Minjae Kim (キム・ミンジェ), Yaeeun Kim (キム・イェウン)
Written and Directed
Yuya Ishii (石井裕也)
Japan release
July 2, 2021
Korea release
October 28, 2021
128 min.
Drama, Romance
Technical Specs
Color / 1:1.85 / Digital / 5.1ch