有种 | Beijing Flickers

Beijing Flickers

Beijing is happening these days, but not everyone is living the golden life. Dumped, fired, evicted and abandoned by everyone (including his dog), a down-on-his-luck man finds solace with a circle of equally ill-fated friends, in this touching and lighthearted drama from independent Chinese auteur Zhang Yuan.

Directed by Yuan Zhang | Starring : Zinuo Wang, Xiaofeng Li, Yulai Lu, Bowen Duan, Wenwen Han | Presented at Toronto Film Festival, Vancouver Film Festival, Thessaloniki Film Festival, Miami Film Festival

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达达 | Dada’s Dance

Dada's Dance

After her mother’s lecherous boyfriend reveals she’s adopted, incorrigible flirt Dada (Xinyun Li) skips town — with hopelessly smitten boy-next-door Zhou (Xiaofeng Li) in tow — in search of her birth mother. Framed by a coming-of-age narrative, director Zhang Yuan’s dreamy, sensual film is an evocative reflection on love, youth and disaffectation in contemporary society.

Directed by Yuan Zhang | Starring : Xiaofeng Li, Ke Gai, Yi Liu, Tao Zhao, Qiang Chen | Presented at Pusan Film Festival, Sundance Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Thessaloniki Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival, Warsaw Film Festival, Febio Film Festival

看上去很美 | Little Red Flowers

Little Red Flowers

Qiang is a four-year-old little rebel, possessed of a pair of luminous eyes and a precociously indomitable will. His father deposits him at a well-appointed residential kindergarten in post-1949 Beijing, since his parents are often away. Life at the kindergarten appears rich and colourful, made up of a variety of cheerfully sunny rituals and games meant to train these children to be good members of society. But it’s not so easy for Qiang to adapt to this kind of carefully organized, minutely scrutinized collective life. A fierce individualist in miniature, he tries but fails to conform to the model his teachers enforce. Yet he still craves the reward that the other students win: the little red flowers awarded each day as tokens for good behaviour. But Qiang doesn’t win any flowers: he can’t yet dress himself, and doesn’t play together with the other kids. He even dares to talk back to the strict Teacher Li and Principal Kong when they try to impose some discipline on him. Gradually, his charisma and bravado start to win over his classmates: their stealthy little rebellions gain steam when he succeeds in convincing everyone that Teacher Li is a child-eating monster in disguise. When their attempt to capture her is thwarted, Qiang’s resistance develops a more disturbing dimension, and he is forcibly ostracized from his companions. Will he succumb to the adult-enforced conformity around him, or will he insist on growing up his own way, by his own rules?

Directed by Yuan Zhang | Starring : Bowen Dong, Yuanyuan Ning, Zhao Rui, Xiaofeng Li, Chen Manyuan | Presented at Sundance Film Festival, Berlin Film Festival, Bangkok Film Festival, Hong Kong Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, Marrakech Film Festival, Espoo Film Festival