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Whether it’s the journey or the destination, films to transport you and shift your perspective.
Where are we going and why do we want to go there? From a young boy’s odyssey on the New York subway in Stand Clear of the Closing Doors to meditations on the passages that have indelibly marked London’s East End in Late At Night: Voices of Ordinary Madness, via a couple’s reassessment of their shared existence in Lifelong, the films in this year’s Journey selection question the choices we make to end up where we do. Road movies, personal quests, journeys of discovery and films that revel in the glory of the route itself, the potential of these films to transport you is endless.
Alexander Payne’s poignant road movie paints an affectionate portrait of the smalltown midwest and features a fantastic performance from Bruce Dern.
Flora Lau’s debut feature, a subtle take on class in contemporary Hong Kong as the lives of a wealthy woman and her chauffeur briefly intersect.
Arthur Ripley’s original and intriguing film noir breaks the rules of the genre as its returning soldier hero defies his gangster boss.
Delmer Daves’ restored Western, an epic cattle-drive with tough Glenn Ford teaching tenderfoot Jack Lemmon the ropes on the trail to self-knowledge.
An acutely personal documentary on the complexly political issue of Western aid programmes in Palestine.
Interviews and re-enactment combine in a thoughtfully humane portrait of Irish-born Eliza Lynch, a much maligned figure in South American history.
A dark satire on current Greek woes that sees a failing TV personality stage his own kidnapping, only to start to unravel as he holds himself hostage.
Chai Chunya’s exquisite film uses Buddhist imagery and ideas from performance art to explore the threatened traditions of a Chinese village.
Portrait of the Paris station as a world in itself: director Claire Simon mixes documentary, fiction and romance in her ambitious, uncategorisable city film.
A Chadian street photographer’s romantic interest in a would-be model lands him in a murky criminal underworld in this smart thriller.
Amusing and touching fable about a man experiencing modern Milan in all its aspects, as he works in a bewildering variety of jobs across the city.
Xialou Guo’s idiosyncratic new film is a penetrating portrait of the frenetic East End of London and a powerful piece of protest film.
A successful Istanbul couple re-assess their shared existence in this taut, meticulously shot and piercingly truthful take on bourgeois malaise.
Ivan Locke’s (Tom Hardy) hitherto rock solid life slowly falls apart during a drive to London.
Brooklyn’s Nigerian Yoruba community provides the backdrop to this universal tale of tradition, modernity and the weight of expectation.
Thought provoking drama-documentary about a diverse group of immigrants learning Italian in an effort to secure a future in the country.
A World War II Norwegian resistance hero traverses a hostile, icy landscape, pursued by German soldiers, in Arne Skouen’s Oscar-nominated film.
Hong Sangsoo’s gentle, melancholic comedy focuses on listless Seoul student Haewon and tilts at bathos and self-delusion with wit and charm.
In Laos, young Ahlo sets about winning a dangerous competition in order to win back his family’s affection.
This picaresque and insightful doc about the people living around Rome’s Ring Road is the winner of this year Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival.
Destin Daniel Cretton’s semi-autobiographical tale of a foster-home worker discovering her own hidden pain is tempered with humour amid the intensity.
A modern-day quest to find his missing son leads Delhi tailor Mahendra on a perilous journey into the unknown in Richie Mehta’s cautionary tale.
A maverick, booze-addled private detective takes a case in his rural Indian homeland in this sharp comedy from Buddhadeb Dasgupta.
A divorced father takes his two children away in this quirky Uruguayan take on the ‘holiday from hell’ scenario.
A poetic account of a young boy’s odyssey on the New York subway.
Small-town romance takes a troubled turn in this striking feature debut by France’s Guillaume Brac, with Vincent Macaigne as a rock guitarist in crisis.
Suburban New Zealand provides the backdrop for this elegiac tale of childhood choices and danger.
Escaping from situations we don’t want to be in, or undertaking a journey to experience a new life, are explored in these films. Sometimes those epic journeys can be life changing or – maybe it’s an intimate trip closer to home. Regardless, we all need to leave our comfort zone, even if things don’t quite turn out the way we expect.
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