Vietnamese film wins prize at Berlinale Film Festival

(VOVWORLD) - The Vietnamese movie "Loris never cries” by director Pham Ngoc Lan won the Best First Feature prize at the 74th Berlinale Film Festival. The website of the Berlin Film Festival (Berlinale) said the film offered the most powerful cinematic experiences in the festival.
Vietnamese film wins prize at Berlinale Film Festival - ảnh 1Pham Ngoc Lan (first, left) and the actors in "Loris never cries". (Photo courtesy of

“Loris never cries” is one of 16 nominated films selected by the Arts Director of the Film Festival from 5 categories: Competition, Encounters, Panorama, Forum, and Generation. "Loris never cries" was judged in the Panorama category. The cast includes People's Artist Minh Chau and artists Ha Phuong, Xuan An, and Hoang Ha. Tran Thi Bich Ngoc and Nghiem Quynh Trang were the producers and Phan Dang Di was the Art Director.

In the film, Nguyen (played by Minh Chau) is separated from her German husband. Informed of his death, she goes to Germany to claim his estate, which includes a slow loris he was raising. She brings the slow loris in her luggage back to Vietnam, where her young niece is preparing for a wedding, which has Nguyen very worried.

Film critic Bita Habibi, writing for Universal Cinema, said: "Using the concepts of time and return, "Loris never cries" beautifully illustrates the saying "No one bathes in the same river twice." On the ICS website Matthew Joseph Jenner wrote: “We are taken on a journey into the ambiguous space between the past and the present, and given unfettered insights into Vietnamese culture as seen through a few different perspectives that work together to create a holistic image of a country continuously caught between a challenging past and a promising future.”

Art Director Phan Dang Di said, "The novelty of Pham Ngoc Lan's film comes from breaking the usual narrative structures that we are used to seeing in cinema."

“We often rely on cause-and-effect narratives, on climaxes, drama, or on elements to evoke emotions in the audience. Lan's film abandons that narrative style and moves towards a narrative style in which everything becomes puzzle pieces that at first glance seem random, but those puzzle pieces are actually structured in a very smart way to bring viewers to a new reality, a new approach to historical issues, personal issues, and very important issues about human life, such as time or change,” said Di.

Born and raised in Hanoi, after studying urban planning at Hanoi Architectural University, Lan taught himself filmmaking. Two of his short films have already been presented at the Berlinale – “Another City” in 2016 and “Blessed Land” in 2019. “Cu Li Khong Bao Gio Khoc” ("Loris never cries") is his debut feature film.

Since 2006, when it introduced the GWFF Best First Feature Award, the Berlinale has been even more committed to supporting the next generation of filmmakers.