China

The Farewell is the story of a Chinese born US raised woman called Billi and her nana Nai Nai who lives in Changchun and has been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Chinese tradition defines that no one should tell her that she is dying. A Family wedding is organised as an excuse to gather everyone one last time to see Nai Nai and bid their farewell to her. Billi, who has voiced her opposition to this tradition and struggles to contain her emotions is not invited to the wedding in fear that she might reveal the truth to Nai Nai. However, against her family’s wishes, she decides to travel to Changchun to attend the wedding.

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Run Time

100 mins

Man in the Well

(JING LI DE REN)

Hu Bo’s posthumously-released short film Man in the Well was produced at the FIRST International Film Festival in Xining, China. Supervised by Béla Tarr, the seminar’s theme was ‘Apocalypse’, and Hu Bo succeeds in delivering a stark, atmospheric vision of end times that stacks up against the Hungarian auteur’s bleakest moments.

Man in the Well follows two starving kids, digging through the rubble of an abandoned building. Their survival impulse apparent, the duo also have something of a destructive streak, recalling both visually and in temperament the brutal gang of anoraked children in Shuji Terayama’s Emperor Tomato Ketchup. With an economy of means and a looming weight, the film ends with a disappearance, its young protagonists covered in blood and staring off into the middle distance. Much is left unspoken and any shred of innocence that could have remained until now is gone. —Herb Shellenberger & Becca Voelcker

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Run Time

16 mins