Film description
Tsai Ming - Liang
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I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone
Hei yan quan
dir. Tsai Ming-Liang / Malaysia, China, Tajwan, France, Austria 2006 / 115’
subtitles: Polish and English
retrospective: Tsai Ming-Liang


Lee Kang-sheng, Chen Shiang-chyi, Norman Atun, Pearlly Chua

Film description

For the first time, such an optimistic tone can be traced in a film by Tsai, although I Don't Want to Sleep Alone is not a joyful film: we can find here the well-known alienation and longing for another person. The director returns to his homeland Malaysia and depicts immigrants (mainly from Bangladesh), away from their homes, alone in a new country. One of them, Rawang, takes care of a homeless man beaten by local cheaters. Gradually, the care changes into a hidden feeling full of devotion. But the new-comer cannot see it, busy flirting with a lovely sad waitress. The girl is lonely - she looks after a paralysed man and sleeps in an attic above his room.

For the first time, the director allows his characters to hope for some closeness and this hope will be present until the last frame. The cold, industrial surrounding and apocalyptic, dense ashes (dropping onto Malaysia from burning forests in Indonesia) do not frustrate the premonition that these three people can find each other and their place on earth. Water is not a bad omen any more - it is a symbol of life again and Tsai's characters can safely float on it.

The film is part of the New Crowned Hope project, celebrating the 250th anniversary of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's birth and the plot is a very loose reference to the libretto of The Magic Flute.

Karolina Kosińska

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There will be a special screening of Guy Maddin's Brand Upon the Brain! attended by the director himself, with a performance by foley artists, narrator Gosia Dobrowolska and an orchestra.

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