The Shadowless Tower
A divorcé with a six-year-old daughter who lives with his sister, he has been estranged from his father for decades.
Gu Wentong (Xin Baiqing), an overly polite, middle-aged food critic, is drifting through the local eateries of a vibrant Beijing with his younger photographer colleague Oyang (Huang Yao) in tow. A divorcé with a six-year-old daughter who lives with his sister, he has been estranged from his father for decades. As Gu reconsiders his own failings as a father, a son, and a lover, director Zhang Lu fashions a definitive work on middle age. Who thought a midlife crisis could be so enjoyable to behold?
‘A wry and wistful Chinese charmer… Director Zhang Lu’s tender, brimming [film]… fixes its setting in the very heart of the Chinese capital, a city rarely portrayed as fondly as it is here… [The film] reveals its arcs of change not in dramatic showdowns or sudden revelations, but in ellipses, in the occasional mysterious fold in chronology and, most rewardingly, in the casual, unforced repetition of certain motifs… [A] lovely dramedy.’—Jessica Kiang, Variety