Synopsis by Josh Ralske
The prolific independent South Korean filmmaker Song Il-gon (Git) shot his film The Magicians on digital video in a single take. The Magicians was originally a 30-minute short, part of an omnibus film, Digital Short Films by Three Filmmakers (the other two were Shinya Tsukamoto and Apichatpong Weerasethakul), commissioned by the Jeonju International Film Festival. Song later expanded it and reshot it as a feature. In a remote bar in the mountains of Kangwon Province, Jae-sung (Jeong Woong-in) and Myung-soo (Jang Hyun-sung), former members of a rock band, wait for their erstwhile lead vocalist, Ha-young (Kang Kyeong-heon, who also appeared with Jeong in Song's Spider Forest) to arrive so they can begin their three-year memorial for the band's bassist, Ja-eun (Lee Seung-bi of A Tale of Two Sisters), who was also Jae-sung's girlfriend. The ghost of Ja-eun oversees the proceedings, as Jae-sung reminisces about his tumultuous relationship with her (in flashback) and Myung-soo ponders his unfulfilled longing for Ha-young. A young monk (Kim Hak-sun) happens by, having decided to give up the monastic life. With a heavy storm brewing outside, he's come to collect the snowboard he left at the bar years earlier, when he first entered the monastery. The Magicians had its North American premiere at the 2006 New York Asian Film Festival, presented by Subway Cinema.