A Dog Barking at the Moon

Director: Xiang Zi
2019 | China, Spain | 107m
GENRE: Drama | East Asian | Gay | Lesbian | Parenting/Family | Religion/Spirituality | Theatre/Performance Art
SECTION: World Cinema


Xiaoyu is settled, content, and pregnant with her first child when she brings her American husband home to China to meet her parents. Xiaoyu’s mother, Jiumei, is deeply dissatisfied in her comfortable life and has integrated herself into a cultish religion. Her father, Tao, is aloof and detached, having long been forced by the confines of his marriage to suppress his homosexual desire. The past haunts all three as each strives but struggles to maintain integrity in the present.

A wrenching family saga unfolds quietly but viscerally as writer-director Xiang Zi charts a narrative path through Xiaoyu’s childhood, her parents’ youth, and the present day. Anchored by strong performances from the three lead actors and exquisite cinematography, A Dog Barking at the Moon—winner of the Teddy Jury Award at the Berlin International Film Festival—is a masterful portrayal of tradition, custom, duty, and obligation in a modern Chinese family, and the painful reverberations that any challenge to those values can have across time and through generations.


Center for Asian American Media / Chinese Rainbow Network / APIQWTC

  • Language: In Mandarin and English with English subtitles
  • Premiere Status: West Coast