The first Mongolian film selected for Cannes is the heartfelt journey of a boy hoping to study his way out of poverty.
In the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar, a poor but prideful teenager stands at the crossroads of staying loyal to his family and chasing a brighter future for himself. Fifteen-year-old Ulzii lives in a yurt with his alcoholic mother and three younger siblings. He’s also a physics prodigy, studying to win a scholarship to one of the country’s best universities. But after his mother departs seeking work in the countryside and Ulizii is left in charge of his younger siblings, he is forced to turn his focus from his books to surviving the harsh winter. If Only I Could Hibernate is a tender coming-of-age story set against the unique backdrop of a family living on the intersection of nomadic tradition and economic modernity.
“Purevdash and her cast … approach this subject with a gentle touch … the whole film is careful to portray its characters as dynamic individuals attempting to break free of economic shackles rather than victims of circumstance.” (Screen Daily)