The Widowed Witch

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China | 2018 | 118 minutes | Cai Chengjie

A third-time widow who falls on especially hard times is declared cursed, but turns superstition to her advantage by travelling the wintry landscape of rural China and offering supernatural advice, in this modern tale of mysticism told with mordant humor and starkly beautiful cinematography.

Monday, May 28, 2018

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  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Uptown

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Thursday, May 31, 2018

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Lincoln Square

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Living in a rural town in China, Erhao finds herself widowed for the third time after a fireworks accident kills her husband and injures her. After her brother-in-law attacks her, she realizes she can no longer stay at the home of her in-laws, and leaves in search of starting a life of her own. Erhao is widely deemed inauspicious and even cursed in the eyes of the villagers, who during these cold winter months, are unwilling to share their home or help her find proper food and shelter. Having no one to depend on but herself, she soon discovers she has magical powers that she can use to her advantage, gaining social power and importance by helping the villagers with their own life problems. Erhao instantly becomes the town's famous shaman, and uses her special skills to make a living. Yet as she helps the village people with their issues day after day, she finds it increasingly impossible to satisfy the need and greed of the community. The debut feature of director Chengjie Cai, The Widowed Witch explores the painful social issue of the "left-behind child," the injustices centered around women, and superstition in rural China with biting humor.

Director Biography
Cai Chengjie (Director, Writer) Cai Chengjie was born on February 12th, 1980 in Pingquan, Hebei. He graduated from Shaanxi Technology University, and majored in Art Design. He worked as a TV show director in CCTV (China Central Television)'s CTV North. He also worked in CCTV- 12's The Columns Show. The Widowed Witch is his directorial debut.

Sponsored by Aegis Gardens, Hainan Airlines, WASA North America Group

  • Original Language Title: Bei Fang Yi Pian Cang Mang
  • Director: Cai Chengjie
  • Principal Cast: Tian Tian, Wen Xinyu, Wang Qilin, Wang Fuyou, Yang Shuyou, Gao Pengcheng, Li Wenfu, Zhao Shulin
  • Country: China
  • Year: 2018
  • Running Time: 118 minutes
  • Producer: Jiao Feng, Hu Xiaotao
  • Screenplay: Cai Chengjie
  • Cinematographers: Jiao Feng
  • Editors: Li Cheng
  • Music: Jin Weiye, Li Qiang
  • Awards: International Film Festival Rotterdam 2018 (Tiger Award)
  • Filmography: Debut Feature Film
  • Language: Mandarin
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • International Sales: Rediance Films