CC: Dust in the Wind (1986)

2019/20 SEASON!

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - Thursday, February 13, 2020

Dust in the Wind (1986)

Thursday, February 13, 2020 @ 7:00 PM
Globe Cinema
- 617 8 Avenue SW, Calgary, AB
$12 General | $10 Members/Seniors/Students | $40 5-Pack Punch Pass | $99 Season Pass

Two young lovers from the village give up high school to work in Taipei, in a nostalgic portrayal of the changing Taiwan of the early 1970s.

The third of Hou Hsiao-hsien’s “coming of age” trilogy, Dust in the Wind (1986) tells the universal and archetypal story of a young couple from a small village who decamp for the big city, little prepared for the struggles that they will encounter upon arrival.

Hou was born in southeast China in 1947, but his family fled to Taiwan within a year, a not uncommon exigency in a period of civil war. A painful experience of cultural and geographical dislocation would come to inform Hou’s sensibility from an early age, as would a general spirit of drift and lassitude. After toiling for a time on the periphery of the nascent Taiwanese commercial film industry, Hou directed his highly regarded “coming of age” trilogy from 1984 to 1986, culminating in Dust in the Wind. In retrospect, these films would come to be considered instrumental in the birth of a Taiwanese New Wave, one of the central developments in World Cinema of the 1980s and 1990s.

Dust in the Wind references cinema’s connection to industrial modernity and Taiwan’s rapid modernization in the 1970s. Large-scale migration of farmers and villagers to major urban centres, trains, supplanted geography, transience and dispossession. Both universal in theme and deeply personal in nature, Dust in the Wind is one of Hou’s most celebrated and revered works, demonstrating that both young love and the city itself can break your heart in any number of ways.

- Written by Jason Wierzba


In the early 1980s, Taiwanese cinema was at a crossroads. Nobody was watching locally made melodramas or kung fu movies anymore, instead opting for films from Hong Kong. Taiwanese society was also rapidly changing, with soaring high-tech economic growth driving people into the concrete jungles of Taipei and the cities. To revitalize the film industry, the state-run Central Motion Picture Corporation turned to a time-tested method to revitalize national cinemas – give the reins over to young filmmakers. These filmmakers, including Hou Hsiao-hsien, Edward Yang, and Tsai Ming-liang, pursued a radical break from the previous stylistic and aesthetic traditions, favouring location shooting, long takes, and deliberate editing to reflect the rapidly changing world around them. Each responded to the alienation wrought by globalization in their own unique ways: Hou with pensive reflection, Yang with meticulous exhumation, and Tsai with melancholy detachment. With this series, Calgary Cinematheque presents five key films from one of film history’s most influential movements.

About Calgary Cinematheque

We are a non-profit film society dedicated to presenting significant, challenging, and essential works of cinema art in Calgary. During our season, which runs from October to April, we screen films weekly, in curated programs which situate each film in a thematic and historical context. We do this because we believe cinema is an essential form of artistic, social, and political expression. Audiences should be able to engage with a wide range of cinematic expression, not only with what is commercially viable. We believe in the power of sharing these experiences with other people in a theatrical setting and we strive to cultivate a community around that experience.  

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NOTE: The showtimes listed on come directly from the theatres' announced schedules, which are distributed to us on a weekly basis. All showtimes are subject to change without notice or recourse to