Screening Dates
  • February 18 (Sunday) 3:00
  • February 23 (Friday) 7:00
  • February 25 (Sunday) 7:00
Vancouver Premiere

With its drifting camera, evocative use of natural light, and gratifying perambulatory nature, this is a film with the power to readjust one’s perceptions of the world around us.”

NYFF 2023

Surrender yourself to the entrancing, internal rhythms of Vietnamese director Phạm Thiên Ân’s three-hour feature debut, a slow-motion odyssey of spiritual introspection and winner of the prestigious Camera d’Or at Cannes. Acclimating the viewer to its temporal designs with an extraordinary opening long-take that ends in tragedy, the film follows an agnostic Saigon man (Lê Phong Vũ) tasked with caring for his five-year-old nephew after an accident claims the life of his sister-in-law. Upon returning home to his Catholic village in search of his vanished brother, past and present, reality and reverie start to subtly converge as he contemplates the consecrated life he left behind. Adopting the language of slow cinema to gesture toward the ineffable (a page pulled from Tsai Ming-Liang and Apichatpong Weerasethakul, both evoked in Phạm’s film), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell is a superlative achievement that gives rise to a sense of untethered time at once hypnotic and otherworldly.

In Vietnamese with English subtitles

The best film of 2023 … So stunningly original that it seems to have reinvented cinema on its own terms.” Jonathan Rosenbaum

A complex work of oneiric cinema [and] an ambitious, expansive work of art.”

Robert Koehler, Cinema Scope

Transfixing … Phạm Thiên Ân’s supremely accomplished first feature may seem narratively slender for its three-hour runtime, but its layered abundance of sensory detail casts an unshakeable spell.”

Guy Lodge, Variety

A remarkable debut feature; provocative, absorbing, and mysterious.”

Allan Hunter, Screen International