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Directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi

Cast: Fusako Urabe, Kiyohiko Shibukawa, Kotone Furukawa

Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize, 2021 Berlin International Film Festival

Official Selection, 2021 Hong Kong International Film Festival

A first date leads two bitter ex-lovers back to an old crossroads. A jaded siren draws a distinguished professor into dangerous waters. A case of mistaken identity pushes two women to resolve long hidden feelings. To director Ryusuke Hamaguchi (Drive My Car, Asako I & II, SDAFF ‘18), there is no such thing as a missed connection. Rather, every chance encounter is a force of nature, sending everyone involved spinning off in completely different directions. In WHEEL OF FORTUNE AND FANTASY, Hamaguchi embraces the power of coincidence through three short films that explore the sneakily profound consequences of unexpected meetings.

An intoxicating energy, electric and erotic, pulses through the entire film. Expressed orally through searingly intimate conversations, we watch as the characters, magnetic in their brutal honesty, unleash whatever primal secret the collision has forced to the surface. They say the things we usually hold silent, the things we are often too afraid to admit, even to ourselves. The outcome is an intricately potent film that effectively captures the alchemical nature of a karmic connection, where two people, each bearing a gift for the other, seem destined to meet, exchange, and be forever changed in the aftermath.

—Yang Jiang

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