In an urban village, a young security guard on his night watch guarding a Buddha statue accidentally breaks into a construction site and gets carried away on a truck. Just at that night, the statue disappears, and then the guard starts his journey of retrieving the statue in the village.
He meets a migrant worker, a local elderly lady and the daughter of the property developer during his search. Each of them has their own secrets emotionally attached to the unique spaces of the village: the worker falls in love with a girl across the street through the window; the elderly lady lingers in an abandoned backyard for old memories; and the young girl wanders through the labyrinth-like alleys searching for her cat that is threw away by her father. Being demolished and rebuilt, the urban village keeps changing and so does everyone’s fate.
Liu Shuyu graduated from Wuhan University with a BA in history. She directed independent short films OBSESSION, NIGHT and THE DOOR. In 2016 she co-wrote her first feature-length script SOME RAIN MUST FALL, which was selected as one of the finalists of the 10th FIRST International Film Festival Financial Forum. In 2018, her directorial debut THE NIGHT WATCH was pre-selected by the 12th FIRST International Film Festival Financial Forum and Hubert Bals Fund of International Film Festival Rotterdam, and is currently in post-production.
The idea of The Night Watch is originated from one chat with an architect friend. He was living in an urban village and working on the planning of its demolition at that same time. My friend joked that he might be working on the demolition of the place he lived someday and eventually became homeless. It sounded ridiculous, but it was indeed the reality. On one hand, most local citizens used to or are still living in these villages. On the other hand, they are unconsciously accelerating or participating in the demolition of their villages and losing what they have and treasure the most in these places.
The urban villages and their fate have always been an interdisciplinary topic, and I hope to explore the duality of inter dependency between people and their living environment from a personal and emotional perspective in the modern-day fable of The Night Watch.