Richard Peña is a Professor of Film Studies at Columbia University, where he specializes in film theory and international cinema. From 1988 to 2012, he … Read more
The new film by Hu Guan, director of Mr. Six, The Eight Hundred had been pulled at the last minute as opening screening at the … Read more
In 2001, in the impoverished Chinese industrial city of Datong, a young dancer named Qiao falls in love with Bin, a local mobster. During a fight between rival gangs, Qiao fires a shot to protect Bin and subsequently gets sentenced to five years in prison. Upon her release, Qiao goes looking for Bin to try and start all over again.
Xiao Shan, a temporary worker at the Hongyuan Restaurant, has just been fired by his boss Zhao Guoqing. Deciding to leave Beijing and returns to his home in Anyang, he goes to see a series of people from his hometown who have also been living in Beijing-construction workers, train ticket scalpers, university students, attendant, prostitutes-but no one wants to go back with him. Dispirited and confused, he searches out one after another of his old … Read more
A hare is let loose in the forest, a dog gives chase and the boy tears after them, his father in tentative pursuit. Minutes pass, the forest falls silent, and when the boy re-enters the frame, something has changed: he now speaks with the voice of his dead mother. Mingchung shows little surprise at Xiuying’s return, he even asks why she didn’t come earlier. She says she’ll leave again once she’s completed one simple task, … Read more
Chen Chuan (Francis Ng) is a simple man who seems to be cursed with bad luck all the time. Convinced by a blind fortune teller that he must eliminate the “villain” that is bringing him the ills, Chen vows to kill the person responsible for his misfortunes. But he soon has second thoughts when he suspect that the “villain” is none other than his own wife.
An intimate and character driven piece, STILL LIFE is the story of James Masino, a gifted Filipino painter who finds out he is afflicted with a paralyzing disease known as Guillain Barre Syndrome. Faced with a future where he can no longer paint, James leaves his life in the city and goes on a self-imposed exile to paint one last time, one final masterpiece. Unable to imagine a life without his art, he plans to … Read more
The film follows a peasant couple, Zhao Deshan and his wife Xiuzhi, living in rural Yunnan province near Zhaotong in southern China. Their lives are thrown into upheaval when the local mayor “rewards” them with two foreign sheep donated by a former villager, now an official in Beijing. The couple is then tasked with breeding the sheep for their wool and to bring prosperity to their small community. Much to their chagrin, the sheep do … Read more
“The World” is a theme park on the outskirts of Beijing, sixteen kilometers from the Chinese capital, designed around scaled representations of the world’s famous landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower or the Leaning Tower of Pisa.The site is seen here not from the visitors’ point of view but through the eyes of a few of its staff, lonely people, communicating poorly, a bit disillusioned with life, glittering for the tourists but dull and restricted … Read more
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: Unknown Pleasures (Chinese: pinyin: Rèn xiāo yáo; literally “Free from all constraints”) is a 2002 Chinese film directed by Jia Zhangke, starring Wu Qiong, Zhao Weiwei and Zhao Tao as three disaffected youths living in Datong in 2001, part of the new “Birth Control” generation. Fed on a steady diet of popular culture, both Western and Chinese, the characters of Unknown Pleasures represent a new breed in the People’s Republic … Read more