June 21, 2006


FUNKY FOREST: THE FIRST CONTACT Last night's screening of FUNKY FOREST: THE FIRST CONTACT was the start of a new religion. This movie, from the director and stars of THE TASTE OF TEA, which won the New York Asian Film Festival's Audience Award last year, is like getting blasted with the cinematic equivalent of hard radiation that mutates you into a brave new lifeform. It's a strange, weird, funny, oddly touching film but I really wasn't prepared for the reaction.

The sold-out house was laughing, cheering, and they burst into applause after a particularly good dance number in the middle of the movie. Far from being exhausted by its long running time, most of them stayed rooted to their seats all the way through the end credits. And when they came out of the theater their eyes were shining, their hair was aflame and their feet hardly touched the earth.

I stuck my head into the theater for the first few minutes to check out the print and wound up standing in the back on one foot (my other foot has broken toes) for the entire film and I didn't feel the pain until hours later when my movie high wore off.

There's one more screening of FUNKY FOREST: THE FIRST CONTACT on Saturday, June 24 at 8:30pm and you can buy your ticket here for this trip into transdimensional space.

June 21, 2006 at 09:04 AM in News | Permalink


I want the soundtrack! That Mandarin Chinese reggae tune in the middle of the movie during the beach dance-off was incredible.

Posted by: Al | Jun 21, 2006 9:18:00 AM

Oh man, I cannot recommend this film enough. I've been at a good chunk of the NYAFF screenings so far (and you're right, people missed out on Art of the Devil), but MAN. I don't know exactly what it was I saw, but I know I'll be back on Saturday.

I wish I still did drugs.

Posted by: Dylan | Jun 21, 2006 9:21:06 AM

the track is crack. listen to it on the movie website
(patience required since it's the second song they are playing over there)

Posted by: me | Jun 21, 2006 9:29:08 AM

is gangster tonight sold out

Posted by: kluang | Jun 21, 2006 9:37:22 AM

Nope - there's still tickets for GANGSTER and COMPANY tonight, so come on down.

And I, too, want the soundtrack for FUNKY FOREST so badly that I am willing to kill a bear for it, if that was necessary.

Posted by: Grady Hendrix | Jun 21, 2006 10:52:33 AM

i need the clip of that guy saying *guitar brothers*

Posted by: me | Jun 21, 2006 1:28:02 PM

I loved the screening, but I couldn't see any other context to enjoy the film. The only way to see it is with a full house really into it. If I saw it alone, I wouldn't last past Side 1. Grady, it was great meeting you!
-Eagles Hat Dude

Posted by: Pureboy | Jun 21, 2006 4:21:31 PM

Hey Grady,

I love this film. When we showed it last year at HIFF, it was amazing to see the Ishii otakus come out of the woodwork for this film. It was a religious experience for many.

Anyway, I am in Tokyo right now, and incidentally, I had dinner with the Nice no Mori folks last night and they said Aniki-san is working on the soundtrack. I believe the release date is October, when the DVD eventually comes out too. They promise that the packaging will be "unique".

Posted by: anderson | Jun 21, 2006 6:34:48 PM

Guys, I'm happy to hear that so many people enjoyed a film. Even reading about the experience makes me excited.

Grady, I hope your fingers will get well soon.

Posted by: eliza bennet | Jun 21, 2006 11:27:30 PM

anderson, or anybody - someone tell them, for gods sake stick english subtitles on the DVD.

Posted by: logboy | Jun 22, 2006 12:09:44 AM

Yes, pleaseee, english subs. Ive watched the trailers like 50 times each.

Posted by: Pelle | Jun 22, 2006 8:57:51 AM

Does anyone know of any info regarding an english-subbed dvd release? The screening on the 24th was Sold Out entirely and I'm DYING to see this.

Posted by: Athena | Jun 24, 2006 10:38:23 PM

This is by far one of the greatest movies i've seen all year. I've had that damn USO song stuck in my head for 3 days now. Any news on the english subbed DVD or soundtrack?

And by the way, Grady, you are the coolest man on earth.

Posted by: Mikey W | Jun 27, 2006 10:07:14 AM

A U.S. company has just expressed preliminary interest in the film, and naturally, if they pick it up, then they will release it with English subs.

And for this reason, it is not in the best interest of the film's production company to allow a Japanese dvd distributor to include English subs on their dvd release. This merely drives down the potential income they could make from a subsequent sale to a U.S. dvd distributor. A U.S. distributor is always going to offer to pay more for a foreign langauge film that is not already available with English subs, as this would give the U.S. distributor a corner on the English language market.

Posted by: paul | Jun 27, 2006 8:38:56 PM

Thanks to all the interest shown, we have just been given permission to add a "By Popular Demand, Encore Screening" of FUNKY FOREST at the ImaginAsian on June 2nd at 7pm. We hope to have tickets available for this very, very soon at: http://www.theimaginasian.com/NYAFF.php.

Also note, that we have had to cancel Friday's 8pm screening of SHIVA, and will be adding a 2nd screening of UMIZARU 2 in it's place. As many of you know, the 1st screening sold out within a matter of hours, so don't sleep on this one... check the above link frequently so that you can get tickets as soon as they are made available.


Posted by: paul | Jun 27, 2006 9:00:35 PM

YesAsia.com is currently taking orders for Funky Forest: First Contact, which will be released on Oct. 27, 2006.

$35.99? I guess I won't eat lunch for a week

Posted by: Mikey W. | Sep 16, 2006 4:47:53 PM

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