My favorite movie this year. I got to hang out a bit with director Lixin Fan a few months ago in LA when our movies were screening together, and we had a nice chat about the blurring between documentary and fiction.
"Last Train Home" is strictly a documentary, but when you're watching it, there's such an elegance, restraint, and formal beauty about it that you forget what it is (my favorite sequences of the film are just shots of migrant workers staring out the windows of their train compartments). When you're finally reminded - in one of the movie's most painful scenes - that this is definitely a documentary, and that these are very real people whose lives we're intruding on, the effect is pretty devastating.
"Last Train Home" is kicking ass on its limited release in the USA so far. It truly deserves all the recognition and praise it's getting.
*Here's a nice article about Lixin from Brian and Chi over at Asia Pacific Arts.