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Last Train Home

Lixin Fan 2009

Every spring, China’s cities are plunged into chaos as 130 million migrant workers journey to their home villages for the New Year in the world’s largest human migration. Last Train Home takes viewers on a heart-stopping journey with the Zhangs, a couple who left infant children behind for factory jobs 16 years ago, hoping their wages would lift their children to a better life. They return to a family growing distant and a daughter longing to leave school for unskilled work. As the Zhangs navigate their new world, Last Train Home paints a rich, human portrait of China’s rush to economic development.


  • Roger Ebert
    It's one of those extraordinary films, like “Hoop Dreams,” that tells a story the makers could not possibly have anticipated in advance. It works like stunning, grieving fiction.
  • Video Librarian
    Last Train Home offers a moving portrait of a family torn apart by economic change, and a wrenching account of parents whose sacrifices for their offspring have unexpected result... Recommended.
  • Educational Media Reviews Online
    Along with the growing coverage of migrant workers’ well-being, career opportunities, and children’s public education from the media, this emotionally engaging film is very highly recommended.

Festival Participation

  • Sundance Film Festival
  • San Francisco International Film Festival
    Golden Gate Award - Investigative Documentary Prize
  • IDFA
    Best Feature Length Documentary
  • Riverrun Film Festival
    Best Documentary
  • Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
    Best Cinematography
  • Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
    Grand Jury Prize - Outstanding Documentary Feature
  • RIDM
    Best Canadian Film

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