24th Athens International Film Festival

Coming Home

22/9/2016, 18:00, Ideal

A teacher is jailed during the Cultural Revolution and returns home after many years to find his wife suffering from amnesia and unable to recognize him. Zhang Yimou's majestic return to China's tumultuous recent history reunites him with his muse, Gong Li.

Copy of COMING-HOME

In the early 1970's, a college professor imprisoned during the Cultural Revolution due to his political beliefs, attempts to escape. However, his plans are thwarted by the intervention of his young daughter, who hasn't had the time to develop a bond with her father and sees him only as an obstacle in her career as a dancer in a propagandist ballet troupe. Years later, the professor returns home to find his family broken and his beloved wife failing to recognize him, suffering from amnesia.

Inspired by collective historical memory and individual stories of suffering in the aftermath of a cataclysmic political event, Zhang Yimou's impressive new film revisits the turbulent years of China's history. Unlike his spectacular epics of the 21st century, Coming Home is closer in spirit to his early work that established him as a major international filmmaker. Yimou collaborates once again with Gong Li. The great actress delivers a heart-rending performance as the professor's amnesiac wife. Official selection for the Cannes Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival.

Director: Zhang Yimou
Screenwriter: Zinghzi Zou
DoP: Zao Xiaoding
Music: Chen Oigang
Principal Cast: Gong Li, Chen Daoming

China| 2016 | Color | DCP | 109' | Mandarin


      Festival Darlings

      Festival Darlings

      Julieta (opening film)

      Julieta (opening film)

      The chance encounter of a 50-year-old teacher with an old acquaintance will lead to the awakening of long-hidden ghosts from her past and urge her to sort out unsolved mysteries, open wounds and pending affairs of the heart about the man she loved, the daughter she brought into the world, her own parents and herself. A hymn to female nature from a director who has always used his films to pay tribute to the women in his life and his mind.

      Elle (closing film)

      Elle (closing film)

      After a violent assault from a stranger, a woman starts inventing surprising ways of taking the law into her own hands and turning herself into an offender. Paul Verhoeven's scandalous and sufficiently kinky return to directing is the exciting distillation of a partnership between a filmmaker who's not easily bullied, an actress who doesn't shy away from a challenge (Isabelle Huppert) and an enjoyably amoralistic story who loves to make its audience squirm.

      The Handmaiden

      The Handmaiden

      A young maid is sent to the mansion of a Japanese noblewoman in order to seduce her. The red-hot passion that erupts between them, threatens the plans of the man masterminding the operation. The virtuosic director of "Oldboy" masterfully envelops the best erotic thriller of the year with intriguing mystery, daring lesbian love scenes, metaphysical hints and unbelievable directorial prowess.

      All These Sleepless Nights

      All These Sleepless Nights

      Two students are unleashed onto Warsaw's endless nightlife and immerse themselves in alcohol, drugs and love. Something between documentary and fiction, the camera follows them from party to party and from pleasure to pleasure, set against a metropolis shedding its identity and a youth agonising over their next thrill. Nights when time dilates, loves lasting for a single smoke, enchanting cinematography and an excellent electronic soundtrack.

      Anthropoid

      Anthropoid

      Can the director of "Cashback", one of the most refreshing romantic comedies of the past decade, be up to the challenge of directing a suspenseful thriller about the real-life plan to assassinate Reinhard Heydrich, a notorious Nazi official? The answer is a resounding yes, as the film ends up being a heart-stopping experience with Cillian Murphy ("Peaky Blinders") again at the top of his game.