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Chinese Portrait (2018)

Xiaoshuai Wang, China

CHINESE PORTRAIT investigates the current state of China, taking the audience on a journey to discover the complexity of the country through the path of one family. The film is entirely composed of fixed long shots and is narrated from the personal point of view of established Chinese director WANG Xiaoshuai. Tracing his ancestors’ movements both on his father and mother’s sides, Wang tracks the history of an ordinary Chinese family over the course of the tumultuous last century. Wang Xiaoshuai is our main character and guide throughout the film. He introduces us to people from all walks of life: from Beijing’s white-collar workers who work tirelessly in the grind of urban life, to rural ethnic minorities who have lived according to the same customs for generations.

Duration
79 minutes
Language
Without dialoge
Subtitles
Video Quality
1080p
Available in
Switzerland, Liechtenstein
Xiaoshuai Wang
So Long, My Son (2019)
Xiaoshuai Wang
China
185′
‘We’re waiting to grow old’. This sentence briefly sums up Yaoyun and his wife Liyun’s bitter realisation about their lives. They were once a happy family – until their son drowned playing by a reservoir. And so Yaojun and Liyun leave their home and plunge into the big city, although nobody knows them there and they cannot even understand the local dialect. Their adopted son Liu Xing does not offer them the comfort they had hoped for either. Defiantly rejecting his ‘foreign’ parents, he one day disappears altogether. The married couple are repeatedly enmeshed in their memories. Finally, they decide to return to the site of their lost hopes. In this family saga spanning three decades of Chinese history, the private and the political merge and the individual gets caught up in the gears of a society in the throes of constant change. Part melodrama, part critique of the times, this film takes us from the country’s upheaval in the 1980s following the Cultural Revolution to the prospering turbo-capitalism of the present day. Told in sweeping tableaux, it makes visible the deep scars that lie beneath the surface of an ostensibly unbroken success story.
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