(Niu Pi II)
Breaking new ground in cinematic art, Liu Jiayin's follow-up to her masterful debut OXHIDE turns a simple dinner into a profoundly intimate study of family relationships.
Building on the stunning vision of OXHIDE (voted one of the best Chinese films of the 2000s), writer-director Liu Jiayin once again casts herself and her parents in scripted versions of their life in a tiny Beijing apartment. Liu takes her uncompromising artistry to the extreme, setting all of the action around the family dinner table, which doubles as her father's leather-making station. As the workbench is cleared for the family to make a dinner of dumplings, the camera catches every meticulous detail of the action in real time. Small moments between family members reveal deep insights into the mysteries of family relations and the art of everyday living.
"She has carefully composed the film seamlessly joining nine takes, some as long as 20 minutes, placing and rotating the camera clockwise 45 degrees in a way that the last take has the same angle of the first one. It looks like a long one-take," explains Adriana Rosati (Asian Movie Pulse).
OXHIDE II advances the inimitable artistry of one of China's most prodigious filmmakers. Its lovingly intimate, naturalistic observations of working-class life suggest "the ultimate work of everyday realism" (Mike Walsh, Real Time Arts).
At the same time, "Liu's shots are carefully, rigorously, exquisitely composed" (Berenice Reynaud, Senses of Cinema), showcasing one of the most gifted visual artists working in China today. The result is "a direct, honest, miniature epic" (Daniel Kasman, MUBI).
Critics Award and Audience Award, CinDi Seoul Film Festival
Directors Fortnight, Cannes Film Festival
Rotterdam International Film Festival
Hong Kong International Film Festival
Vancouver International Film Festival
Top 100 Chinese Films, Time Out Shanghai
"A masterpiece. Inventive, quietly virtuosic."
David Bordwell, Observations on Film Art
"Arguably the most interesting new Chinese director to emerge since Jia Zhangke."
Peter Rist, Offscreen
"Beautiful, complex; once again, we are glued to the screen."
Adriana Rosati, Asian Movie Pulse
"A direct, honest, miniature epic."
Daniel Kasman, MUBI