One of the strongest entries into the historical horror subgenre in recent memory, director John Hsu’s Taiwanese chiller Detention has been picked up for theatrical and virtual cinema distribution by Dekanalog. Following is the official press announcement.
Gotham-based distributor Dekanalog has added the acclaimed Taiwanese festival favorite DETENTION to their bustling 2021 slate, with plans to release the award-winning film in theatres and virtual cinemas nationwide on October 8th. The film, from director John Hsu, marks the distributor’s second genre release following the Tunisian horror favorite DACHRA, which Dekanalog will bow on July 9th.
Set in 1962 Taiwan during the White Terror martial law period, DETENTION tells the story of Fang Ray Shin (Golden horse Award nominee Gingle Wang), a female student at the hillside Greenwood High School and, attending counselling with teacher Mr. Chang (Meng-Po Fu), they gradually fall in love. It was a dangerous period where sensitive books were banned and free speech were restricted, but Mr. Chang has secretly organized a study group for banned books.
One day, Mr. Chang disappears without explanation, and only Ray-shin and her fellow student Chong-ting seem to remember that he ever existed. The two agree to work together to find their missing teacher, but soon find that their school is no longer the familiar world they remember. The building has become an alien land of ghosts and demons, and the two students will be forced to confront a terrible, secret truth if they hope to escape with their lives.
The pic, which Fangoria Magazine called “One of the best horror films of 2020”, won an unprecedented five trophies at The 56th Golden Horse Awards and “Best Film” at Fantasporto. Based on the celebrated 2017 video game of the same name, it has already been hailed by critics at one of Taiwan’s all-time great horror films.
Dekanalog, co-founded earlier this year in New York City, has placed a focus on acquiring new titles from both virtual and conventional festival markets – with an emphasis on presenting international titles for U.S. audiences – as well as releasing restored classics from around the world.
DETENTION / d. John Hsu / 2019 / Taiwan
Logline: Set against Taiwan’s White Terror martial law period of 1962, a pair of quick-thinking students must face off against a school filled with legions of ghosts and demons in order to save their missing teacher and themselves.
Stars: Gingle Wang, Meng-Po Fu, Jing-Hua Tseng, and Cecilia Choi
Laurels: Busan; Rotterdam; Fantasia; Golden Horse Film Festival (Winner of New Director, Adapted Screenplay, Original Song, Visual Effects, and Art Direction); Udine; New York Asian Film Festival; and Fantasporto (Special Jury Award Winner)