TIFF review: Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Kaili Blues director Bi Gan's latest is a bravura display of passionate filmmaking

LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT WAVE D: Bi Gan. China/France. 140 min. Sep 11, 3:45 pm, TBLB 3 Sep 13, 2:45 pm, TBLB 4 Sep 15, 5:30 pm, Scotiabank 8. See listing. Rating: NNNN

After many years away, a man returns home to a city in southwest China for his father’s funeral, triggering memories of a murdered friend and an old love he’s obsessed with finding.

Clearly acknowledging its debt to Wong Kar-wai and Tarkovsky, the movie takes place during one night where the past, the present and the hero’s dream world co-exist. At the mid-point, the neo-noir atmosphere recedes as the hero wanders into a movie theatre. When he puts on 3-D glasses, we do, too.

An astounding 55-minute action-packed dream sequence all filmed in one continuous shot follows, a technical and artistic marvel that will be one of this year’s festival’s revelations.

A bravura display of passionate filmmaking. 

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