Zhang Lu

- [Juror’s Statement]

Films are not about recording what is already known, but about exploring a certain relationship between what is already known and what is still unknown. This is the case with fiction films, as it is with documentaries.

Zhang Lu

Born in Yanbian, China in 1962. In 2004 he directed his first feature, Tang Poetry (2003), which was selected for Locarno. He then began his career as a film director in both Chinese and Korean, making more than ten feature films. His next film, Grain in Ear (2005) won the Prix ACID- CCAS at Cannes Critics’ Week. His feature films Desert Dream (2007), Dooman River (2010) and Fukuoka (2019) premiered at Berlinale. The Shadowless Tower (2023), his latest film, was in competition at the 73rd Berlinale.

The Shadowless Tower

CHINA / 2023 / Chinese / Color / DCP / 144 min

- Director, Scriptwriter: Zhang Lu
Photography: Piao Songri
Editing: Liu Xinzhu
Music: Xiao He
Cast: Xin Baiqing, Huang Yao, Tian Zhuangzhuang
Producers: Xu Jiahan, Peng Jin
Production Company: Shanghai Lu Films Co., Ltd.
World Sales, Source: Films Boutique

Gu Wentong, a middle-aged food writer, is sampling bustling restaurants in Beijing accompanied by Oyang, a photographer in her twenties. After Wentong’s divorce, he had left his six-year-old daughter with his sister and her husband. Harboring regrets about the poetry to which he once devoted himself, he reexamines his past mistakes—and searches for a new life. Reunions and partings follow one after the next—his long-lost father, his estranged ex-wife—as the seasons come and go. A Tibetan Buddhist pagoda in Beijing stands unmoved, as if watching over them.