A Holy Family, 2022
Production Details

Original title


Country of Production

Taiwan, France

Year of production







Volos Films in co-production with Films de Force Majeure

Original Language

x-twn, Chinese



Festivals / Awards

Visions du Réel 2022
Taipei IFF 2022 (Best Edit, Best Documentary, Audience Choice Award and the Grand Prize of the Festival)
États généraux du film documentaire Lussas 2022
Fipadoc Biarritz 2023 (Prix Ciné+)
Budapest IDF 2023
Hong Kong IFF 2023
Hong Kong Film Festival UK 2023
Singapore Chinese Film Festival 2023
Brooklyn Film Festival 2023
Taiwan ...

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After 24 years of absence, director A-Liang Elvis Lu returns to his family in a rural area of southwestern Taiwan. 
His elder brother, A-Zhi, has been recognized as a psychic in the village since the age of 12. Having set up a home altar with 12 Taoist deities since then, A-Zhi communicates deities’ advice to villagers on a donation basis; whereas A-Zhi helps believers make career decisions with his psychic readings, he repeatedly fails in his own entrepreneurial ventures in agriculture. 

The father of A-Liang and A-Zhi is a gambler who is addicted to an underground lottery and seeks celestial hints for good numbers even in the rising smoke of worshipping incense; he believes that the deities will one day show him lucky numbers to make him rich overnight. What holds the indebted family together is their mother. After 40-year marriage with her irresponsible husband, she is embittered in mind and increasingly enfeebled; the only consolation she finds is in their Taoist altar at home and a continuous stream of religious rituals performed there.

A-Liang, urged by his mother to finance the family whenever a bill ends up unpaid, disagrees with his family’s religious practices, superstitions, and blind beliefs in supposedly life-changing miracles. When he comes back home from the capital with a camera more than two decades later, he is forced to face his own trauma and grudges and starts to observe the intertwined emotions in his family from the perspective of a filmmaker. It is an intimate journey of home-coming, a portrait of rekindled family bonding despite differences in religious beliefs, and an unflinching tale of self-discovery through filmmaking.

Official trailer