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China Onscreen Biennial: The Cremator (焚尸人 ) US Premiere

Part of the UCLA Confucius Institute's inaugural China Onscreen Biennial (银幕中国双年展)project, an unprecedented bicoastal collaboration among seven distinguished American educational and cultural organizations to promote US-China dialogue through the art of film. October 13-31, Los Angeles | October 26-11, Washington, DC

Sunday, October 28, 2012
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
UCLA Film & Television Archive Billy Wilder Theater, The Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90024

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.

Preceded by

West Coast Premiere


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. 


Sponsor(s): Confucius Institute, Center for Chinese Studies

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