三峡好人 | Still Life

Still Life

Coalminer Han Sanming comes from Fengyang in Shanxi to the Three Gorges town Fengjie to look for his ex-wife whom he has not seen for 16 years. The couple meet on the bank of the Yangtze River and vow to remarry. Nurse Shen Hong also comes to Fengjie from Taiyuan in Shanxi to look for her husband who has not been home for two years. The couple embrace each other and waltz under the imposing Three Gorges dam, but feel they are so apart and decide to have a divorce. The old township has been submerged, while a new town has to be built. Life persists in the Three Gorges – what should be taken up is taken up, what should be cast off is cast off.

Directed by Zhang Ke Jia | Starring : Tao Zhao, Zhou Lan, Sanming Han, Lizhen Ma, Hongwei Wang | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Sao Paulo Film Festival, Stockholm Film Festival, Nantes Film Festival, Marrakech Film Festival, Adelaide Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, Sydney Film Festival, Taipei Film Festival, Durban Film Festival, Karlovy Vary Film Festival, New Zealand Film Festival, Melbourne Film Festival, Wisconsin Film Festival

Advertisements

任逍遥 | Unknown Pleasures

Unknown Pleasures

Unknown Pleasures, sequel to the widely praised Platform, again focuses on a generation of Chinese kids. In fragmentary observations, Jia sketches a picture of the lethargy of today’s youth, a generation that has grown up with technological gadgets, advertising and Internet. Jia refers to moments in the eventful year 2001, when an unemployed man blew up a whole building and the Olympic Summer Games of 2008 were granted to Beijing. In as far as the scenes were not improvised, the script of the film was inspired by work of the philosopher Zhuangzi, a Taoist who argues in favour of enjoying the (unknown) pleasures of life. The two unemployed kids Xiao Ji and Bin Bin have plenty of time for pleasures like hanging out and falling in love. In the case of Xiao Ji the subject of his affections is Qiao Qiao, a dancer and model for an advertising campaign for a major Mongolian brand of drink. The fact that Qiao Qiao has a dangerous friend does not make much impression on Xiao Ji: he takes his inspiration from American crime films and most wants to die young. Bin Bin does not have much faith in the future either. His girlfriend is going to Beijing to study. She wants to become a businesswoman, while Bin Bin’s ambitions do not extend any further than karaoke and cartoons.

Directed by Zhang Ke Jia | Starring : Tao Zhao, Wei Wei Zhao, Qiong Wu, Hongwei Wang, Zhubin Li | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, Thessaloniki Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Belgrade Film Festival, Istanbul Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival, San Sebastian Film Festival