Given the current recommendation to stay home and practice social distancing, we at the Chicago International Film Festival are looking at past selections from each year of the Festival that you can stream now from home. Stream our past selections as we look forward to the 56th Chicago International Film Festival this October 14-25, 2020. Find the full 56 Films for 56 Years selections here.
For today’s #56Films entry, Millennium Mambo from the 37th Chicago International Film Festival, is a drifting mood piece that’s one of the most undervalued films from one of our greatest directors, Hou Hsiao-Hsien.
Director: Hou Hsiao-Hsien
37th Chicago International Film Festival
One of the most undervalued films by one of our greatest living filmmakers. Hou’s acknowledged masterpieces are, for the most part, period movies: from City of Sadness through The Puppetmaster and Flowers of Shanghai to his most recent, the dazzling wuxia re-invention, The Assassin. But I would rank him as one of the most perceptive and attentive chroniclers of the present. Few filmmakers are as committed to capturing not just the character but the very texture of the contemporary world — as evident in Daughter of the Nile, Goodbye South Goodbye, Café Lumiere, and this drifting mood piece from 2001, synced to its raver heroine’s cyclical highs and hangovers. So many of Hou’s great films are freighted with the weight of history; this one summons, with hypnotic beauty and a creeping sadness, the inertia of the present. — Dennis Lim, Director of Programming at Film at Lincoln Center