The Unseen River

A film by

Vietnam/Laos / 23' / 08/2020 / fiction

Stories told along the river: a woman reunites with her ex-lover at a hydroelectric plant; meanwhile, a young man travels downstream to a temple in search of a cure for his insomnia.

Square Eyes - LF_PDD_2020_BlackLetters
Square Eyes - LF_PDD_2020_BlackLetters

Phạm Ngọc Lân


Phạm Ngọc Lân is a Vietnamese film director with a background in urban planning and architecture. Lan’s debut short film ‘The Story of Ones’ (2011) has been screened in numerous film festivals and art museums. His first two short fiction films, ‘Another City’ and ‘Blessed Land’ both premiered at the Berlinale Shorts Competition. His newest short film ’The Unseen River’, which is part of the anthology project ‘MEKONG 2030’, will premiere at the Pardi di Domani in Locarno Film Festival. Currently, Lan is developing his first feature film Cu Li Never Cries.


  • Giòng Sông Không Nhìn Thấy / The Unseen River – 2020 – 23’
  • Một Khu Đất Tốt / Blessed Land – 2019 – 19’
  • Another City / Thành Phố Khác – 2016 – 25’
  • The Story of Ones I  Chuyện Mọi Nhà – 2011 – 11’
Square Eyes - Director - Pham Ngoc Lan - Square Eyes


Director: Phạm Ngọc Lân
Screenplay: Phạm Ngọc Lân
Producer: Phạm Ngọc Lân & Ngô Đài Trang, Trần Thị Bích Ngọc
Executive Producers: Gabriel Shaya Kuperman , Alex Curran-Cardarelli
Cinematographer: Phạm Quang Minh & Nguyễn Vinh Phúc
Sound Design: Arnaud Soulier
Sound Recordists: Tô Hiếu, Arnaud Soulier, Nguyễn Ngọc Tân
Editor: Julie Béziau
Composer: Nguyễn Xuân Sơn
Production Designer: Kelly Hoàng
Cast: Wean, Naomi, Minh Châu, Nguyễn Hà Phong, Hà Hoàng, Mạc Can


  • Locarno Film Festival, Switzerland (5 – 15 August, 2020)
    International Competition Pardi di Domani


Press materials

EPK: Click here

Stills, poster & director’s photo: Click here

Dialogue list English: Click here

Downloadable trailer: Click here