Last Train Home

*Doclisboa | Apordoc (Portugal)
* Cinéma du réel (Paris , France)
* Forum des Images (Paris, France)
* IDFA (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
* Jerusalem Film Festival (Israel)
* Sunny Side of the Doc (La Rochelle, France)
* Sydney Film Festival (Australia)
* Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival (Greece)
* One World International Film Festival (Czech Republic)
* ZagrebDox (Croatia)
* Hong Kong International Film Festival (Hong Kong)
* Doc Edge (Auckland, New Zealand)
* Ljubljana Doc Film Festival (Slovenia)
* BAFICI (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
* DocPoint – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival (Finland)
* Ambulante (Mexico, Mexico)
* Krakow Film Festival (Poland)
* Moscow International Film Festival (Russia)
* Sarajevo Film Festival (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
* Belfast Film Festival (Northern Ireland.)
* People in Need (Clovek V Tisni, (Prague, Czech Republic)
* EDOC- Encuentros del Otro Cine International Documentary Film Festival (Quito, Ecuador)
* Singapore International Film Festival (Singapore)
* Galway Film Fleadh (Ireland)
* Zurich Film Festival (Switzerland)
* CNEX Documentary Film Festival (Taipei City , Taiwan)
* Internazionale a Ferrara (Ferrara, Italy)
* Reykjavik International Film Festival (RIFF) (Iceland)
* Taiwan International Documentary Festival (Taipei County , Taiwan)
* Open Frame / Public Service Broadcasting Trust (New Delhi, India)
* Fiuggi Family Festival (Roma, Italy)
* Possible Worlds (Sydney , Australia)
* MakeDox (Skopje, Macedonia)
* Kaohsiung Film Festival (Taipei City , Taiwan)
* Millenium International Documentary Film Festival (Bruxelles, Belgium)
* Verzio Film Festival (Budapest, Hungary)
* Rio International Film Festival (Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil)
* Free Zone Belgrade Human Rights Film Festival (Serbia)
* Camerimage - The International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography (Toruń, Poland)
* Flahertiana IDFF (Perm, Russia)
* Mumbai Film Festival (India)
* Minsk International Film Festival (Republic of Belarus)
* Malatya International Film Festival (Istanbul, Turkey)
* Comptoir du Doc (Rennes, France)
* Aarhus Filmfestival (Denmark)
* Black Nights Film Festival (BNFF) / Pimedate Ööde Filmifestival (PÖFF) (Tallinn, Estonia)
* Festival Premiers Plans d'Angers (France)
* Museum of World Culture (Göteborg, Sweden)
* Rendez-Vous Istanbul Film Festival (Turkey)
* Doc Cévennes - Festival international du documentaire en Cévennes (Lasalle, France)
* Astra Film Festival (Sibiu, Romania)
* Festival International Jean Rouch (Paris, France)
* HumanDOC International Film Festival (Warsaw, Poland)
* Paysages de Cinéastes - Festival international du film de la Ville de Châtenay-Malabry (Châtenay-Malabry, France)
* Visions of New China (Lalitpur, Nepal)
* Muestra de Cine Internacional Memoria Verdad Justicia (, Guatemala)
* Rencontres Ethnologie et Cinéma (Grenoble, France)
* Semaine Chinoise (Rennes, France)
* Viennale (Austria)
* São Paulo Chinese Film Festival (Brazil)
* SALT Ecology Film Program (İstanbul, Turkey)
* Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand (Thailand)
* Le Cinématographe (Nantes, France)
* Stranger Than Fiction (Ireland)
* Tekfestival (Roma, Italy)
* Refuge in Films (London, UK)
* Human Rights International Film Festival Mexico (Mexico)
* Gijón International Film Festival (Spain)
* Alba International Film Festival (Italy)
* Kiev International Film Festival (Ukraine)


* EMMY AWARDS: Best Documentary and Outstanding Business and Economic Reporting - Long Form |
* Cinema Eye Nominee
* Best Feature Length Documentary - IDFA
* Gold Award - ANASY
* Golden Gate Award - San Francisco
* In the Spirit of Freedom Award - Jerusalem

- [ ]
- [ Lixin Fan’s Biography-Filmography ]
- [ Review from The New York Times ]
- [ indieWire : Discovery |Last Train Home” Director Lixin Fan ]


Last Train Home

by Lixin Fan
| Canada | 87’ - 52’ | 35mm | 2009 | HD |

Chinese New Year or the Spring Festival is the most important holiday in the lunar calendar. It remains the last stronghold of Chinese traditions that are withering rapidly with the invasion of new values. Each year, hundreds of millions of migrant workers return to their homes from the city to the rural countryside, throwing the transportation system into utter chaos. For many migrants, the cheapest and fastest route home is by train. People camp at railway station for tickets, climb through windows, stand for days and nights, wear diapers to avoid using the lavatory, and struggle to stay in sanity to survive the ride. They are determined to return home at any cost for the solemn purpose of getting back to see their families.

The Zhangs left their ancestral village and their one-year-old daughter to find work in Guangzhou city 16 years ago. The couple toils in a poorly ventilated, dimly lit garment factory to make money to pay for the daughter's schooling. The Zhangs never complained because they don't have a choice. To have her educated is the only way to give the daughter a better life in the future. Now their daughter is 17, and she only gets to see her parents once a year at the Spring Festival. The rebellious teenager always felt lost and neglected since her parents were away all these years. She is convinced that her parents care more about making money than taking care of her. Thus, she quit school, came down to Guangzhou city, and become a young migrant worker, which is exactly what the parents don't want her to be.

Living in the same city but not talking to each other, the family is shattered by years of misunderstanding. The old tradition of parents making self-sacrifice to better the life of children's is brutally challenged by the new social reality. Good will may not always have good result. Nevertheless, hope always sprouts from despair. This Spring Festival, the mother decided to bring the family once again to embark this migrant odyssey to go back. Her mission is to reunite the family and to get the daughter back to school. Love and sacrifice didn?t triumph for the past 16 years. Will it succeed this time?

China's booming economy is largely based on exploiting the vast population of cheap labor. Sacrificing the poor for GDP growth, the country runs the risk of making millions of families separated and their children fell uneducated. These issues could all pose serious backlash against the country's ambitious goal. LAST TRAIN HOME examines not only individual's fate among this chaotic social evolution but also the country's loss and gain in a race to be the world's next super power.

Jerusalem Film Festival's Jury remarks:
"In its direct approach, LAST TRAIN HOME, made by Lixin Fan, highlighted the frailties and vulnerabilities of his characters in a way that universalizes their personal story and makes it a story of our times. In its depi...ction of the fracture of the building blocks of society, the imperatives of the global economic system we live with, which was intended to confer improvements on the lives of humanity has lead instead to the breakdown of home, health and families and de facto slavery for many millions of the intended beneficiaries."