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12, 29 OCTOBER

Beijing  Bastards, 1992
Zhang Yuan (China)

12 OCTOBER AT 8:30 PM, CINÉMA 1 - duration 95 min

An independent production, boycotted and censured, Beijing Bastards is a portrait of the generation growing up after the clashes of Tiananmen in 1989. The film focuses on the youth of Beijing and on the reminiscences of a generation with illusions, between fantasy and reality. The relationships between the characters arise from the circle of people revolving around the band of the first rockstar in the history of China, Cui Jan (who plays himself), while the narrative starts with a quarrel between a boy and a girl (he wants to convince her to have an abortion but she disagrees). Maomao, the girl, disappears and the boy only finds her at the end when the baby is already born. The film covers myriad threads and situations, often interrupted without an apparent dramatic reason.

Special Jury Prize at the Locarno Film Festival, 1993

Shanghai, Shanghai, 2005
Michelangelo Gandolfi (Switzerland), with Ben Tseng (Hong Kong) and Javin Mo (Hong Kong)

29 OCTOBER AT 2:00 PM, CINÉMA 2 - duration 52 min

A new and original look at Shanghai, a port city that is developing at such a fast and uncontrolled rate as to threaten the record of its “rival”, Hong Kong.
A symbol of modern China, where the watchword is success, Shanghai represents the splendours and degradation of global capitalism where there is no room for the affluence of the so-called “Western” middle class.

Seventeen Years, 1999
Zhang Yuan (China)

29 OCTOBER AT 3:00 PM, CINÉMA 2 - duration 90 min

Seventeen Years is the first Chinese production ever authorised to film inside a prison. The film-maker Zhang Yuan chose Prison No. 1 in Tianjin, built more than a century before. Standing in the middle of Tianjin – a big industrial city some 200 km from Beijing – the jail houses around 5,000 men and women, sentenced for serious crimes punishable by imprisonment for 10 years or more. Zhang Yuan chose the prison because it was there that he met the young woman who inspired the film, who had been found guilty of homicide after accidentally killing her half-sister. The crew spent several weeks filming in the prison. The documentary-style film depicts the fierce rivalry between two half-sisters of a modest family who bring tragedy upon both parents and children.

Silver Lion Award for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival, 1999