The sophomore feature of the South Korean animator Yeon Sangho (The King of Pigs) The Fake enters the Vanguard program of the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.
The Fake (Saibi), as described in the Toronto festival programme, is a blistering critique of organized religion.
A church is built in a rural village that officials have determined will be submerged. 3 people turn against each other. Mr. Choi, an elder of this church, intends to pocket the villagers' compensation. Min-chul, a former resident (and also a con man) who had been travelling out of town, returns home, and expects to get savings that were made for his daughter Young-sun's college fund.
Reverend Sung, the new head of the church, is a silent accomplice to Choi's plan, but soon starts to think it would be better if both Choi and Min-Chul got out of the way. The trailer seems so suggestive (and not action-packed at all) that one wonders where the plot fits in. It has the feel of Sergio Leone's Once Upon A Time in the West, though: isolated men in search of their common destruction.
Korean director Yeon Sangho promises a thriller between good and evil, and also writes the screenplay for The Fake, the only animated feature film to have its world premiere at the 2013 Toronto Festival.
Cho Youngkag is credited as the producer (Production: Studio Dadashow), and the film was made for a total budget of $400,000. Toronto International Film Festival runs from 5-15 September.
Read below the full synopsis for The Fake via Cinando.com (be warned, there are spoilers).
In a rural village that officials have determined will be submerged, a church is built. Mr. Choi, an elder of this church, calls upon Reverend Sung, asking to be appointed head of the church, so that he can shine the light of hope upon these poor villagers. However, Choi's real intention is to pocket the villagers' compensation. In the meantime, Min-chul, a former resident who had been travelling out of town, returns home just as his family is receiving their compensation; he too is hoping to pocket some compensation, as well as the savings that were made for his daughter Young-sun's college fund.
In the process, Min-chul gets into an argument with Choi, and when Min-chul is taken to the police station, he discovers that Choi is in fact a wanted con man. But nobody is willing to listen to Min-chu l- known as a notorious son of a gun- while they deeply trust Reverend Sung, who treats them warm-heartedly. After Young-sun loses all her college funds to her father, Choi approaches her, proposing that he will pay for her college tuition if she undertakes some work for him. And so Young-sun leaves town.
As time passes, Reverend Sung realises that Choi had built the church only to fulfill his fraudulent scheme, but he is in too deep to hand Choi over to the police. Full of rage against the church for hiding his daughter, Min-chul is determined to reveal the church's secrets. Reverend Sung starts to think that if it were not for Choi and Min-chul, everyone would be happy. And with a sense of righteousness curdled with a sense of hatred, Min-chul and Reverend Sung begin their war of destruction.