ACMI and AIDC present
Non-Fiction 2021 – Opening Night film
This urgent and artfully made documentary which plunges viewers into the city of Wuhan in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic is a stirring ode to frontline medical workers and the resilience of humanity.
Rarely has recent global history seemed so far away, yet so present. It's one of the year's essential documents.
Stick around after the screening for a prerecorded interview with director Hao Wu.
Following its premiere at the 2020 Toronto Film Festival, 76 Days has continued to astound global audiences and critics alike. Set entirely within the city of Wuhan from the earliest days of the COVID-19 lockdown, the film takes audiences directly to ground zero, observing a crisis unfolding in real time.
What’s incredible about 76 Days is its unfettered access and the bravery of those making and appearing in the film. Shot across several city hospitals, the filmmaking team smuggled the footage out, sending it back to director Hao Wu who edited the footage in real time from America. The resulting film is an astounding technical and narrative feat, as compelling as any Hollywood thriller.
Deep behind the front lines of the quarantined city, a cast of characters begin to emerge. An elderly patient who the hospital staff called Grandpa roams the hallways causing low level mayhem and mischief in his wake, while a tiny newborn dubbed Little Penguin is cared for by hospital staff until they can be reunited with their parents. And then there are the frontline medical workers, tireless in their efforts to bring the situation under control, comforting their patients and striving to find some levity amongst the disaster movie scenario they find themselves in.
76 Days is unlike any other documentary you’ll see this year and reminds us of the sheer dramatic power of the medium. But most importantly, it reminds us of the heroic actions of everyday citizens and our capacity to care for strangers and loved ones alike.
– Kristy Matheson, Director of Film Programs
READ: ‘The eye of the storm’: how 76 Days captured Wuhan’s Covid lockdown up close
Patrick Wintour, The Guardian, Jan 2021
READ: A Doc About Wuhan's Lockdown Was 'Too Real' For My Wuhan-Born Dad. I'm Glad I Watched
Laura Gao, NPR, Dec 2020
Sun 28 Feb 2021
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Children under the age of 15 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian