Nostalgia for Countryland

Director: Dang Nhat Minh
Screenwriters: Dang Nhat Minh

Institute History

  • 1996 Sundance Film Festival


The opportunity to view Vietnamese films is still rare outside Vietnam; work by expatriates serves as the primary example of the artistry and expressiveness of Vietnamese cinema. So it‘s very special for us to be able to exhibit the newest feature by the director regarded as the most important and talented one in Vietnam, Dang Nhat Minh.

Nostalgia for Countryland is a poetic and evocative story set in a small village in North Vietnam’s delta. Nham, an innocent country boy of sixteen, lives with his mother, sister, and sister-in-law and must support the family, working all day in the rice fields, because his father and older brother are away. One day a neighbor asks him to pick up her visiting niece, Quyen, who has been living overseas. Quyen’s journey back to her home village is a sentimental one, spurred by memories of pastoral pleasures, but the world she encounters now is harsher and more difficult. Nham, however, is smitten by her, and Dang Nhat Minh weaves a story of a young man’s awakening and an expatriate’s realization of the realities that now exist in her countryland.

Tragic, yet poignant and heartfelt, this is a film which is a true window into another world. It makes us concomitantly aware of both how different and perhaps how similar our lives are. This film is a delicate and different view of a Vietnam still not understood by most Westerners.

— Geoffrey Gilmore

Screening Details


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