太平。天國 | Buddha Bless America

Buddha Bless America

In a sleepy part of rural Taiwan in the late 1960s, the life of a village is shattered when Uncle Sam arrives in tanks. The Yanks are there to take part in joint military exercises with Taiwanese troops, but the villagers take their compensation by direct methods – they steal anything that can be moved. One of the film’s great strengths is the way that writer Wu Nien-jen, in only his second feature as director, shades the comic tone. The film’s main character, Brain (Lin Cheng-sheng, himself a director), condemns the rampant theft but turns against the Americans when they take him for a beggar. He steals two huge boxes, not knowing what they contain.

Directed by Nien-Jen Wu | Starring : Cheng-sheng Lin, Chuan-Chen Yeh, Chung-Hsien Yang, Bin-hui Lee, Yung-Teh Hsu | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival

戏梦人生 | The Puppetmaster

The Puppetmaster

Li Tien Lu is the world’s most famous puppet master. Born in Taïwan on the wake of World War I, he lived through the Japanese occupation, and American bombings of his country. Now eighty-four, reflects on the forces that shaped his life: “My hands breathed life into my puppet figures. I created them and directed the drama of their fates, almost as though I were God himself. But the reality is that, with someone above me pulling the strings, I, too, am a mere puppet…”

Directed by Hsiao-hsien Hou | Starring : Tianlu Li, Giong Lim, Hung Liou, Chen-Nan Tsai, Lai-Yin Yang | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Fribourg Film Festival, Istanbul Film Festival, Buenos Aires Film Festival, Thessaloniki Film Festival