Odyssey: a Chinese cinema season – 60+ films in 8 curated sections, 10 discussion panels, exclusive Q&As and 4 awards. A not-to-be-missed festival in the UK to celebrate international cinema!

After 4 months of intensive preparations, Odyssey is finally ready to reveal its full festival programme to the UK audience. 

Official trailer of Odyssey

As the most important offline activity at Odyssey: a Chinese cinema season, this year’s festival will open with a rising Chinese female director – Tracy Dong’s documentary film Hard Love. It centres on the wave of single Chinese ladies and discusses social hotspots like marriage, family, work, and childbirth, which are topics that today’s young generation are most concerned about in contemporary China. The Opening film will be screened in both London and Edinburgh on the 10th of May 2022, marking the beginning of our exciting Odyssey journey (detailed information regarding the opening ceremony can be found here).

Trailer of the opening film

Other highlights of Odyssey will be mostly screened online this year. 「Neo Horizon」(6 films) and 「An Exploration」(29 films) are the first two short film programmes to be launched through Odyssey’s official website on the 10th of May for one month. 「The Galaxy: Artists’ Moving Image」(5 films) which focuses on experimental films, will premiere on the 11th of May and run for 29 days. We hope to use short films as a dynamic and versatile format to not only broaden the framework of narratives and aesthetics, but also to change the stereotypical perception of Chinese filmmaking among international audiences. 

Feature film programmes will have a relatively short screening period, with each programme being available for just over a week. Starting from the 12th of May, we will present a new thematic feature film programme each Friday to take audiences on a tour through this fascinating new generation of Chinese cinema.

「The Emerging Waves」(6 films) pays special attention to the new generation’s independent, arthouse, and documentary productions. From the 12th of May to the 19th of May, six innovative and inspiring films will be shown in this section in offline and online formats. Lan Yu (4K Restoration) which is one of the best gay films that China has ever produced, will be shown on the 12th of May at The Princes Charles Cinema. Another award-winning title River of Salvation will be screening on the 17th of May at Finsbury Park Picturehouse. Apart from these special offline screenings, four additional films will be shown online via Shift 72 from the 13th of May. Being Mortal reproduces the bitterness of life by depicting an Alzheimer’s patient’s family. The Fourth Wall creatively uses the parallel universe as a narrative technique to discuss how to reconcile with family, society, and ourselves. Black Tide Coast follows a poetic style, aiming to depict abstract emotions, ideas, and feelings beyond the control of the images. The Ark utilises documentary images to record the complicated relationship between individuals and society, science and religion. 


「Women Through the Lens」(5 films)focuses on women’s life experiences, which will be screened online from the 27th of May to the 2nd of June.  This section currently consists of five films, Wind exposes the plight of single mothers and daughters from ethnic minorities in a patriarchal society; Love Conquers All shows an ambivalent intimate relationship that can conquer as well destroy everything; Spring Tide portrays a mother-daughter relationship of two generations in which both warmth and confrontation are intertwined; One Summer through the eyes of the protagonist to reflect many social issues arising in China today, including marriage, education, urban development and the political system; and finally, Chang’E draws on the classical Chinese myth of “Chang’e running to the moon” to create an ironic and compassionate mirror metaphor between the unearthly fairy and the exhausted 55-year-old factory worker.


Chinese Regional Cinema」(4 films)explores the diversity of Chinese regional cultures. From the 3rd of June to the 9th of June, by showing four carefully chosen films, this programme looks beyond Beijing and Shanghai to feature a diverse range of China’s regional filmmakers, breaking the supercity dominated stereotypes of Chinese cinema. Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains and Drifted in Life calmly display ordinary families’ incidents within the development of city and society in Southeast China. Wisdom Tooth reveals the story of a brother and a sister, situating an ambiguous, romantic, and heartbreaking relationship in the snowy Northeast region of China. Great Happiness takes viewers to the Northwest of China to experience both happiness and challenges three young adults need to face in the fast-developing city. 


In addition, the festival also offers a special animation short film section titled 「Shanghai Animation Film Studio Retro」(4 films), which will be screened online from the 20th to the 26th of May. By looking back at classic Chinese animations such as Little Carp Jumps Over the Dragon Gate and The Little Stream from the 1960s, Nine-Colored Deer and The Deer’s Bell from the 1980s no in 2K restoration, this section offers UK audiences the opportunity to enjoy animated films of different eras and art styles while learning about the history of Chinese animation. Furthermore, a feature-length animated film has been selected to be screened in our「Surprise Film」section, which will be released on the 1st of June online as a celebration and special tribute to the International Children’s Day at Odyssey. 

From 8:00 am UK time on the 1st of May, Odyssey will be launching an online pre-sale, single film and special passes can be purchased via the festival’s official website – odysseychinesecinema.uk. The festival offers a range of options, including festival full pass, section pass as well as a standard single film rental to meet different needs. Hosted by Shift 72, the festival’s official platform will also be launched from the 1st of May,  users can register an account, to preview trailers and access other information about all of the selected films.

Meanwhile, Odyssey has also prepared a surprise for our fans who have been following us. From the 3rd to the 30th of April, we will be running a lucky draw on the festival’s Instagram. We will be giving away a number of free Festival Full Pass and discounts each week. We welcome your active participation and engagement in our lucky draw. Below is the full list of film titles available at the festival and we look forward to spending time with more fans of Odyssey’s magnificent cinematic world.

About Odyssey

Odyssey aims to empower a shared appreciation of film, to create an inclusive cinematic experience, and to encourage cross-cultural understanding. From 10th May to 10th June 2022, with more than 40 films in 8 curated sections, 10 panel discussions and many inspiring Q&A sessions, we will bring you a whole month of outstanding and innovative Chinese cinema that promises to illuminate your mind. The festival will not only introduce the latest young Chinese film talents to the UK audience, but also provide forums for professionals to exchange creativity and business ideas.

Odyssey will take place in a hybrid format in 2022. The opening film screening will be hosted in person by our venue partner, the Picturehouse Cinemas, in London and Edinburgh on 10th May with a reception. Most of the programme will be available online for all audiences across the country, and we will also organise several pop-up special cinema screenings throughout. The online festival platform of Odyssey will be powered by Shift 72.



Who is our Headline Sponsor this year? – Your most reliable renting company in London!

Azad Ayub Limited is a multi-national award-winning property management and development company, founded by investor, entrepreneur and philanthropist Azad Ayub who has a background in international civil engineering. The company owns and manages properties in North London and has been providing high-quality houses to its clients for over 30 years. Recently the company’s portfolio has expanded to Spain, Pakistan and the USA.

Apart from his property business, Azad has been generously giving back to society as a reputable philanthropist. He is a keen supporter of some of the most prestigious charities in the UK, including Able Child Africa, Lord Mayor’s Appeal Charity, Television for the Environment (Trustee), Royal Institute (Patron) and many more.

We would like to thank Mr Azad Ayub for his generous support toward our Odyssey journey.

Related Information

Keep yourself updated with our upcoming exciting programme announcements by following our social media accounts!

Festival Date: 10th May – 10th June 2022
Format: Offline in London, Edinburgh, and Online via Shift 72
Presented by UK-China Film Collab
Festival Website: odysseychinesecinema.uk
Festival Instagram & Twitter: odysseyccs

For Press Enquiry Please Contact

Liao Zhang

Lead of Public Relations
Email: liao.zhang@ukchinafilm.uk
WeChat: LZ_Gloria