Part of CINEMA EXPLORATIONS
Destination: Singapore…Immigration, Service, and Family
Anthony Chen’s Ilo Ilo, winner of the prestigious Camera d’Or as best first feature at Cannes, is set in Singapore during the 1997 Asian financial crisis and chronicles the day-to-day drama of the Lim family with troublesome grade-schooler Jiale and his overstressed parents, Heck and Leng. Comfortably middleclass and with another baby on the way, they hire a Filipino immigrant, Teresa, to be a live-in maid and nanny. An outsider in both the family and Singapore itself, Teresa initially struggles to manage Jiale’s antics and find her footing in her new community. Eventually the nanny and her charge form a unique bond, but just as Teresa becomes an unspoken part of the family, unforeseen circumstances in an uncertain economy will challenge the new normal yet again. Maggie Lee of Variety describes it as “brimming with love, humor, and heartbreak” and Tim Grierson of Screen Daily calls it “…a small gem about how families persevere in the toughest of times.” Ilo Ilo is representing Singapore for the 2014 Foreign-language Oscar. In Mandarin, Tagalog, Hokkien, and English with English subtitles throughout. Unrated. 99 Min.