A judge and a convicted criminal both discover that justice is rarely a simple matter in this drama from Chinese writer and director Liu Jie. It's 1997, China has just reclaimed Hong Kong, and in the town of Zhuozhou, Qiu Wu is a car thief who is facing the death penalty for stealing two vehicles whose total value is more than 600,000 yuan. However, a revised law is soon to go into effect that would change the penalty to imprisonment instead of execution. While a number of officials openly question the ethics of taking a man's life for an act that would only merit time behind bars in a few weeks, Tian Chengyou (Ni Dahong), the judge presiding over the case, may not be the best man to consider the issues -- his daughter recently lost her life in an auto accident caused by a car thief, sending him into a deep depression that's playing havoc with his marriage. Not confident that Tian Chengyou will rule in his favor, Qiu Wu is desperate to find a way to escape execution, and attempts to broker a deal with a well-to-do businessman who is in need of a kidney transplant. Qiu Wu is willing to donate the needed organ in exchange for a stay of execution, but then discovers that he can't give up the kidney until after he dies. Touxi (aka Judge) was an official selection at the 2009 Venice International Film Festival.
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