New York Asian Film Festival 2021: five must-see movies
From ultra-bloody Kazakh comedy to a Donnie Yen epic and the tale of a ninja battling racism, these are NYAFF 2021’s must-see movies.
Pivoting to a hybrid format that will see nearly half of its 60-film virtual lineup at Lincoln Center for those lucky enough to see it in person, the New York Asian Film Festival is set to explode with 21 premieres. worlds, 29 North American premieres, coast-to-coast online access for select titles and very special treats for the hometown crowd. (This includes a free outdoor screening of Raymond Lee’s classic wuxia “Dragon Inn AKA New Dragon Gate Inn” on August 11.) Now in its 20th year, NYAFF has long been the largest and most organized showcase in the world. America of contemporary Asian cinema, and its latest incarnation – which takes place amid the ongoing pandemic and the growing wave of anti-Asian violence that accompanies it – is another fantastic display of the fearless fearlessness that has always characterized the program of the festival.
The slate spans the gamut from DIY indie to WB-funded blockbusters, with a PSA added this year for good measure: the goofy “All U Need Is Love,” in which Jackie Chan and Heaps other Chinese movie legends are forced to take the threat of COVID-19 seriously when quarantined together in a Hong Kong hotel. While many of the hottest titles are only screened for in-person vaccine attendees in Manhattan – as reflected in our festival preview – dozens of exciting films will be available to viewers nationwide on the Virtual Cinema platform. Film at Lincoln Center.
Here are five must-see NYAFF 2021 highlights. Be sure to click here for more festival details, as well as a rundown of the full lineup.