Lillian

The gripping and painful journey of a woman hard to forget


Inspired by the story of Lillian Alling in 1927, and presented at the latest edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Quinzaine des Réalisateurs, Lillian is Andreas Horvath’s modern vision. A young Russian girl with no money and no job, stranded in New York, she decides to return to Russia on foot, trying to cross the border into Alaska. Within a universal and “symbolic” imagination, we accompany the strange journey of a determined woman, in search of something: her homeland? To overcome her own limits? To return to her origins? This visionary film, deeply rooted in the landscape, is an amazing journey of survival and discovery. Of America, its people and territory, now hostile and incredibly (un)welcoming (?). A landscape with which Lillian seems to be immediately at ease, despite its immense vastness and in spite of its pitfalls. In one way or another, she always manages to get away with it. Produced by Ulrich Seidl, the film is a skilful work of subtraction, magnetic and painful, but also compelling and intriguing. I also deserve credit for the extreme empathy of its protagonist, Patrycja Planik.

Maria Cera

About the Director

He was born in Salzburg in 1968. An award-winning filmmaker and photographer, his films have screened at the Venice, Locarno, Karlovy Vary, Rotterdam, London, Chicago and San Francisco film festivals, among others. Lillian is his first feature film.