Next Up… Joy Song
Esquire Singapore|November 2021
Not your typical filmmaker, Song views a world through a lens that’s uniquely her own.
Wayne Cheong

Everybody is a story. If you want to quickly get a sense of someone, quiz them on their film diet. And so, when it comes to Joy Song, who looked like she hailed from the Goth/ art clique in secondary school, the last film that the filmmaker watched was The Wailing, a Korean horror movie that follows a detective investigating a spate of random killings. Aside from the VFX and the acting, Song zeroes in on the story structure, marvelling at how Korean films don’t ‘follow the three-act structure’ that she was taught. “There are several storylines that go all over and yet, somehow,” she continues, “it’s streamlined that it still makes sense.”

This upending of conventions is what appeals to her. This also informs us what sort of filmmaker Song is.

JOY SONG: It’s like a play on the unexpected and that’s thrilling because you’re pushing the boundaries of what is believable and what is expected.

ESQUIRE: Is there such thing as a bad film?

SONG: No such thing. But a boring film is something that does not play with the potential of the medium. I grew up on a lot of art-house cinema and I love to play and experiment with the content. Because at the end of the day, film is supposed to be a sensory experience; it should change the viewing experience into something more visceral. I’m very into surrealism. I’m into creating and transporting you to a new world because sometimes reality for me is not enough. And I like to create new dimensions and flesh them out. Being experimental is a huge thing for me. So, being known as a ‘director’ doesn’t encapsulate what I do.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM ESQUIRE SINGAPOREView All

Meet Toby Tan, NFT Project's First Collaborator

Esquire Singapore collaborated with him on a sneaker non-fungible token (NFT) project. Meet Toby Tan, also known as Tobyato, our NFT project’s first collaborator.

5 mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Air Jordan 1, The Most Fetishised And Enduring Trainer Design Of All

Isn’t the phrase ‘classic trainers’ an oxymoron? Not if you’re wearing the Air Jordan 1.

2 mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Cartier's Emblematic Feline That Allows It To Keep Clawing Back Into Our Consciousness

There’s certainly an allure to Cartier’s emblematic feline that allows it to keep clawing back into our consciousness.

1 min read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

About Damn Time

Stuck between the drudgery of the Monday blues and hump day is Taco Tuesday, but you haven’t had Taco Tuesday unless it’s at the Super Loco Group’s establishments.

1 min read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Art By The Squares

The artistic excellence of an Hermès carré is marked not only by its prints; it’s also a thoroughly versatile accessory.

2 mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Henry Cavill Unlike Geralt Of Rivia Who's A Man Of Few Words

Unlike Geralt of Rivia who’s a man of few words, Henry Cavill unreservedly tells us how to fulfil destiny while helming the live-action lead role on Netflix’s The Witcher.

5 mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

The Young Gun

From the folks behind Junior the Pocket Bar comes another outlier on the scene.

1 min read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Bvlgari's Man Terrae Essence Refreshing Yet As Old As Time

Bvlgari’s Man Terrae Essence calls on Tuscany’s rolling hills and cypress trees in a scent that is both novel and nostalgic; refreshing yet as old as time.

1 min read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Next Up… Paul Lee

The up-and-coming actor is more than just his hair.

4 mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021

Keanu Reeves - A Man Of Our Time And He's Just Living In The Moment

Guy’s always working—68 movies in 35 years. Playing killing machines, doofuses, romantics, messiahs and devils. But always Keanu. Which always means something more.

10+ mins read
Esquire Singapore
Winter 2021