The Other Half (Ling Yi Ban)

YING Liang, China (2006) Narrative, 111 minutes

Sichuan dialect w/ English subtitles

the_other_half-thumb Top 10 Films of 2008: “A fierce and harrowing cry of political rage.” – The New Yorker

“Subtly subversive” – The New York Times

“One hell of a beautiful film… Endlessly haunting… with serene, even joyous consciousness that is the opposite of despair.” –Variety

Xiaofen (Zeng Xiaofei) spends all day listening to everything that’s wrong with China, opening her eyes to the chaos that threatens her own life.

Working as a secretary for a legal office, Xiaofen records clients detailing the sordid aspects of their lives: divorce cases, medical malpractice suits, financial corruption and old-fashioned personal revenge. Xiaofen starts to question her own relationship with her boyfriend (Deng Gang), fresh out of prison and looking to get into trouble again with his gambling habit. While Xiaofen deals with the overwhelming social malaise surrounding her, rumors spread of a disaster at the local chemical plant, threatening to poison the entire city.

Indie director Ying Liang follows up his celebrated debut Taking Father Home with a brutally frank portrait of the social and environmental problems plaguing contemporary China. “A vivid angle into ordinary life in China” (David Bordwell, Film Art: An Introduction), Ying Liang’s filmmaking examines multiple facets of society with a deceptively direct filmmaking style “that has few parallels in modern cinema.” (Richard Brody, The New Yorker)

Director’s Bio:

Ying Liang


The New Yorker
New York Times

Select Film Festivals:

  • Tokyo FilmEx Film Festival
  • Rotterdam International Film Festival
  • Hong Kong International Film Festival
  • Singapore International Film Festival
  • Jeonju International Film Festival
  • San Francisco International Film Festival
  • Sarajevo Film Festival
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