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Wood and Water

April 15 - April 21, 2022

Wood and Water

(Jonas Bak, 2021)

Exclusive Los Angeles theatrical engagement!


2:00 PM & 7:00 PM daily


2:30 PM & 7:30 PM daily


2220 Arts + Archives
2220 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90057

Yanai Initiative logo_edited.jpg
Yanai Initiative logo_edited.jpg

With  seamless grace, shooting on 16 mm, and underscored by a soundtrack from  Brian Eno, German director Jonas Bak moves from the tall spires of the  Black Forest to the teeming skyscrapers of Hong Kong in his tranquil,  deeply moving feature debut.

Anke  retires from her job at the church in a small town in the Black Forest.  She looks forward to reuniting with her children over the summer  holidays by the Baltic Sea, at a place where they used to live as a  young family, and where she lived her best years. At the last minute,  her son Max is unable to join them because of protests that are bringing  Hong Kong, where he lives, to a standstill. She has been out of touch  with him for many years and after an otherwise uneventful summer and  facing the void of retirement, she decides to visit him.

A mother  wants to check in on her children every now and then, but Hong Kong is  also her adventure, her escape. She must spend a few days there by  herself until Max returns from a worktrip. Protest-ridden Hong Kong is  an enigmatic new world to her through which she moves carefully. Through  conversations with strangers, she gradually settles in. A young woman  who is sad to leave Hong Kong, Max’s doorman, a psychiatrist, a fortune  teller and a social activist. These encounters and her experience of the  city help her to break down the inner walls she constructed years ago  and make way for a new chapter in her life.

This  modest but beautifully shot and edited film contains some of the last  images of daily life in a free Hong Kong that we’ll ever see.

- Amy Taubin, Artforum

[There's] evocatively warm energy at the center of Jonas Bak's Wood and Water... tension roils along the edge of each frame.

- David Ehrlich, Indiewire

The  nearly abstract transition from Germany to Hong Kong […] has to be one  of the most beautifully accomplished sequences of the year so far.

- David Hudson, Criterion

I  was especially taken by Jonas Bak’s gentle character study... It’s in  the brief encounters, the small talk and the unspoken hurt that our  heroine comes to life.

- Beatrice Loayza, The New York Times

Wood and Water is one of those films that gets so much right for so long that it’s  actually a bit nerve-wracking. Is the filmmaker going to make a misstep?  First-time feature director Jonas Bak doesn’t err.

- Michael Sicinski, Letterboxd

(Available to download after screening date)

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