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Screen/Society--"Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell" (Phạm Thiên Ân, 2023)

(Phạm Thiên Ân, 2023, 182 min, Vietnam, Vietnamese with English subtitles, DCP)

Winner of the Camera d'Or for best first film at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival

INSIDE THE YELLOW COCOON SHELL is a reverie on faith, loss, and nature expressed with uncommon invention and depth. It's a simple tale told with visual complexity: after a car accident claims the life of his sister-in-law and leaves his 5-year-old nephew an orphan, a thirty-something man named Thien (Le Phong Vu) leaves Saigon for a trip back to his rural hometown. During his meditative, wandering visit, Thien wrestles with his own agnosticism in the face of others' religious beliefs, summons memories of his long-disappeared brother, and reconnects with a former girlfriend who now lives as a nun at a Christian church and school. With its drifting camera, evocative use of natural light, and gratifying perambulatory nature, this is a film with the power to readjust one's perceptions of the world around us.

"Exquisite... casts an unshakeable spell. Invites comparisons to such titans as Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Tsai Ming-liang and even Theo Angelopoulos, without feeling derivative of any." - Guy Lodge, Variety

"Provocative, absorbing and mysterious. Defined by visual splendor and a complex questioning of faith." - Allan Hunter, Screen

"A spellbinding tale of the soul's unfathomable desire for the other-worldly. Pham has certainly found his own divine calling with filmmaking." - Josh Slater-Williams, Indiewire

Contact: Hank Okazaki