Ballad of Roaming Spirits

  • Li Xiaofeng, Kai Jia
  • China
  • 2019
  • 81 min
  • World Premiere
  • Luminous

Since his wife left him, Jun has been a wandering soul who wonders what purpose all his suffering serves. In a simple farming village surrounded by barren hills, he takes care of a small temple. He looks at his hands: his right is blessed, and his left is deformed. He believes he has healing abilities and goes from house to house to help the sick.

As the seasons pass, this gently-paced portrait of the wandering Jun is interwoven with impressions of village life, with its rituals and festivals, and poverty that makes many people desperate, and some defiant. 

Two sheep, destined to be sacrificed, add a grimly poetic note to this uncompromising and moving meditation on fate and the search for meaning. The body cam worn by one of the sheep also makes for some surprising shots. Meanwhile, Jun’s musings gradually reveal more about the crises he has had to endure and the reason for his self-sacrifice.

Credits

  • 81 min
  • color / black and white
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Chinese
  • Subtitles in: English
Director
Li Xiaofeng, Kai Jia
Production
Li Xiaofeng for 41documentary film production
Cinematography
Li Xiaofeng
Editing
Kai Jia
Sound Design
Cao Yi

IDFA history

2019
World Premiere
Luminous

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IDFA history

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