Kwok Yun (Ke Shi) is a simple peasant in a small mining village. She is unmarried, but is having an affair with the school principal. Her life is turned upside down after she sees what could be a UFO, and helps a rich ‘American’ (from Germany!) after he has broken his leg.
The town suddenly finds itself the centre of attention, with an avalanche of tourists and money coming their way.
The town leader Chief Chang (Mandy Zhang) takes sees this an an opportunity to increase the prestige of the town, and is determined to make as much of it as possible.
UFO In Her Eyes takes a long hard look at the process of modernisation and how it alters and damages old ways of living. This is most obviously played with the state of the lake, which has been used by a local fisherman for years. It is slowly destroyed, and all the fish begin to die. It eventually becomes impossible for him to live.
The messages in the film aren’t as straight-cut as that, though. Kwok Yun’s story is fascinating and at times tragic, as various social factors force decisions on her. She is forced to find a balance between what is best for her, and what is best for the town.
Interestingly, locals were used for most of the roles, which give some depth to the townspeople – and ultimately helps to lift the movie and its messages.
UFO In Her Eyes is funny, tragic and an interesting analysis of two different faces of China colliding, and the fallout that this can cause.