Director/Screenwriter/Editor: Peng Tao. Producer: Gao Hong. Cinematographer: Li Xi. Production Designer: Ai Xianhong. Sound: Zhang Yang. Cast: Cheng Zhengwu, Lang Nv.
Director Peng Tao achieves soaring humanism and lyricism in this portrait of life among the lonely. Cremator Cao makes a living incinerating the dead, while secretly selling “ghost wives” to bereaved families seeking companions for their recently deceased, single sons. Unwell, he makes similar plans for himself, but his plot is upended by an encounter with a young woman who’s searching for her missing sister. Cao’s succeeding journey with this young woman sets up the film’s second half, in which his new companion battles her own mounting hardships, and gradually becomes embroiled in his, leading to a denouement of exceeding loveliness. – Shannon Kelley
HDCAM, color, Putonghua with English subtitles, 90 min.
West Coast Premiere
SOME ACTIONS WHICH HAVEN’T BEEN DEFINED YET IN THE REVOLUTION 2011
Director/Producer/Screenwriter: Sun Xun. Editor: Xu Chong, Sun Xun, Tang Bohua. Composer: Jin Shan.
Animated using woodblock prints, SOME ACTIONS uses pulsating, hallucinatory imagery to evoke a Kafkaesque atmosphere of grotesquery, anxiety and vague ideological constrictions. “I only ask questions,” says animator Sun Xun. “It’s up to the viewer to think about what he has seen. And to come up with his own answers.” – Tom Vick
HDCAM, color, 13 min.