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UCLA Confucius Institute Launches 1st China Onscreen Biennial, starts Oct 13

From a press release by the UCLA Confucius Institute:

A groundbreaking exhibition of Chinese cinema – featuring cutting-edge and blockbuster contemporary films, as well as seldom glimpsed archival rarities – launches at venues citywide in Los Angeles on October 13, 2012.

The program selection proposes a new way of looking at Chinese cinema, encompassing richly diverse, genre-crossing programming, including short and feature-length animation, documentaries and narrative films, as well as works originated for different platforms such as theatrical release, internet viewing, and art installations.

The China Onscreen Biennial (COB) is the achievement of a partnership undertaken by the UCLA Confucius Institute (CI) with seven distinguished American non-profit film and educational institutions: the UCLA Film & Television Archive, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Film at REDCAT, and Pomona College, as well as the Freer and Sackler Galleries of the Smithsonian Institution, the Confucius Institute at George Mason University, and the Confucius Institute at the University of Maryland.

In scope and design, the COB is an unprecedented bicoastal collaboration among American cultural organizations to promote US-China dialogue through the art of film. Selected programs will reprise in the Washington, DC area beginning October 26.

For more information about the China Onscreen Biennial, visit: www.confucius.ucla.edu/cob.

Full schedule after the break.



CHINA ONSCREEN BIENNIAL: PROGRAM SCHEDULE FOR LOS ANGELES

Saturday, October 13 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

North American Premiere

LACUNA 2012

DIR: Derek Tsang, Jimmy Wan. PROD: Pang Ho-cheung, Subi Liang. SCR: Derek Tsang, Jimmy Wan, Zhang You-you, Kuk Yuk. CAST: Zhang Jingchu, Shawn Yue, Chu Yue-sun, Yoga Lin, Lawrence Chou.

A Hong Kong boy and a Mainland girl wake up in each other’s arms in the bedding section of a Beijing department store – without any idea of how they got there. Snatches of a night of drunken revelry and missing money propel them on a mad dash all around town to try to reconstruct what happened. This charmingly madcap rom-com maps a Beijing according to its young and texting generation.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 96 min.

Preceded by

West Coast Premiere

SHANGHAI STRANGERS 2012

DIR/SCR: Joan Chen. PROD: Alexi Tan. CAST: Jiang Yiyan, Teo Yoo, Wang Yong, Arran Hawkins, Zhang Haoxing.

Christmas eve. A woman meets a foreigner. Memories spark of love born of another brief encounter – between a recent Shanghai riven by SARS and the city’s forgotten Jewish past.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua and English w/ English s/t, 24 min.

In person: Derek Tsang

Sunday, October 14 7:00 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

North American Premiere

ALL APOLOGIES 2012

DIR: Emily Tang. PROD: Yang Jian, Chow Keung. SCR: Han Jie, Emily Tang, Dong Fang. CAST: Cheng Taishen, Yang Shuting, Liang Jing, Gao Jin.

The death of a child tragically binds two couples in its wake: construction foreman Yonggui and his wife Yun Zhen, and Yonggui’s former driver who runs a tiny grocery with his wife, Qiaoyu. Convinced that a life is “owed” to him, Yonggui feels entitled to take what he wants, while Qiaoyu believes it is her duty to “pay” for her husband’s mistake.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 90 min.

Monday, October 15 8:00 pm @ Pomona

World Premiere

LAST DAYS 2012

DIR/SCR: Cui Zi’en.

Longtime Chinese queer film director Cui Zi’en returns to his narrative and lyrical roots in LAST DAYS, a surreal tale of love, lust and transformation.

Digital video, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 90 min.

Preceded by

North American Premiere

OUR STORY: 10 YEARS OF GUERRILLA WARFARE OF THE BEIJING QUEER FILM FESTIVAL 2012

DIR: Yang Yang. PROD: Beijing Queer Film Festival Organizing Committee.

Female documentarian and festival organizer Yang Yang’s film follows the peregrination of the Beijing Queer Film Festival across a decade to find a regular home. An atlas of Beijing alternative screening venues, OUR STORY is a document of homophobia and of queer maneuvering against normative power.

Digital video, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 42 min.

In person: director Cui Zi’en

Wednesday, October 17 7:30 pm @ the Academy

West Coast Premiere

THE MONKEY KING: UPROAR IN HEAVEN 3D 2012 / 1961-1964

2012 3D Conversion – DIR: Su Da, Chen Zhihong. PROD: Ren Zhonglun, Frederic Rose, Wang Tianyun, Qian Jianping. CAST: Li Yang, Chen Daoming, Chen Kaige, Feng Xiaogang, Zhang Guoli.

1961-1964 Two-Part Original – DIR: Wan Laiming, Tang Cheng. SCR: Li Kerou, Wan Laiming. Based on Journey to the West by Wu Cheng’en.

A beloved classic of Chinese animation, Wan Laiming and Tang Cheng’s 1960’s animated feature returns to theaters after a painstaking and dazzling 3D makeover led by experts at Los Angeles-based Technicolor. One of the most famous characters in Chinese mythology, the mischievous Monkey King leaves chaos in his wake from the Dragon King’s palace to the heavenly halls of the Celestial Emperor. Set to a blended Beijing opera-orchestral soundtrack, the film casts an enchanting spell.

3D DCP, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 92 min.

Preceded by

Presentation on THE MONKEY KING’s digital restoration and 3D conversion by Tom Burton and Pierre Routhier of Technicolor.

Friday, October 19 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

THE RED DETACHMENT OF WOMEN 1970

DIR: Fu Jie, Pan Wenzhan. CAST: Liu Qingtang, Xue Jinghua, Song Chen.

The tumultuous Cultural Revolution, remembered now as a dark period of political violence in China, also saw the creation of of the yangbanxi (revolutionary model dramas). In this iconic ballet film, the heroine escapes from an evil landlord and becomes the leader of a women’s militia – while guided by a Communist Party cadre. Courtesy of the China Film Archive, this is ­possibly the first officially approved screening of the film in the US in over 20 years. The presentation also marks the 40th anniversary of President Nixon’s visit to China in 1972.

35mm, color, 105 min.

Post-screening panel discussion moderated by UCLA professor Robert Chi; with Beijing opera master and former yangbanxi performer Qi Shufang, theater director Peter Sellars, and Director of UCLA’s Center for Chinese Studies Yan Yunxiang.

This program has been made possible with funding support from the UCLA Center for Chinese Studies.

Saturday, October 20-28 @ Pop-Up Gallery, Mandarin Plaza, Chinatown

BEIJING FLICKERS POP-UP EXHIBITION

In 2010, a photography commission prompted filmmaker Zhang Yuan to tweet a casting call to young Beijingers for a new work that would be an update on BEIJING BASTARDS (1993), his landmark Sixth Generation film about the artistic underground in 1990s China. Of the 200 people who responded, 11 were chosen. The still and video portraits of the chosen 11, photographed over a Beijing winter, debuted in an exhibition called Unspoiled Brats later that year. The stories these young people told of their struggles and dreams, and life in the margins of China’s mega-capital subsequently became the basis for Zhang Yuan’s new film.

The COB is proud to present for the first time anywhere the complete new work by Zhang Yuan that he has since renamed BEIJING FLICKERS. The Chinatown Business Improvement District has converted two storefronts in Chinatown’s Mandarin Plaza into a pop-up gallery just for the exhibition. Los Angeles gallerist Lois Lambert guest curates the pop-up exhibition. The namesake film will screen on October 23 at REDCAT (see program listing below).

Opening reception starts at 4:00 pm on Saturday, October 20, followed by a conversation with filmmaker Zhang Yuan, curator Lois Lambert and a Chinatown-based artist (TBC) at 5:30 pm.

Pop-up gallery hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10:00 am-6:00 pm, Sunday 12:00-5:00 pm; closed on Monday.

Saturday, October 20 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

US Premiere

SAUNA ON MOON 2011

DIR/SCR: Zou Peng. PROD: Chen Zhiheng. CAST: Wu Yuchi, Yang Xiaomin, Lei Ting, Zhan Yi, Meng Yan.

Zou Peng’s captivating second feature witnesses several years in the life of a boisterous sauna/brothel in the Southern Chinese province of Guangdong. The film is fascinating in its kaleidoscopic intricacy, but never sensational in its matter-of-fact rehearsal of power relations between the women who populate the brothel and the brothel manager, who pursues a dream of creating an unrivaled pleasure palace for local “special guests.”

35mm, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 93 min.

This program has been made possible with funding support from the UCLA Center for Chinese Studies.

Sunday, October 21 4:00 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

US Premiere

ARE WE REALLY SO FAR FROM THE MADHOUSE? 2010

DIR: Li Hongqi. PROD: Alex Chung. CAST: P.K. 14.

Li Hongqi followed his critically acclaimed fiction feature WINTER VACATION (2010) with this, his first documentary, a film as mesmerizing and unsettling as his fiction work – even as it’s harder to pin down. Joining China’s art rockers P.K. 14 on their first national tour, Li renders standard concert film footage utterly absorbing through rigorous formal experimentation, including an asynchronous soundtrack.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 87 min.

Monday, October 22 8:30 pm @ REDCAT

International Restoration Premiere

ANIMATED, GOLDEN AND RESTORED 1934-1980

This selection of animated shorts digitally restored by the China Film Archive offers a rare glimpse of the luminous output of Shanghai animators during the 1950s-’60s and late 1970s-’80s, often considered the twin Golden Ages of Chinese animation. Featured are vibrant paper-cut animation by one of the pioneering Wan brothers, ink-wash masterpieces by ASIFA lifetime achievement honoree Te Wei, A Da’s playful modernism, and as a bonus, China’s earliest extant animation (showing Disney and Fleischer influences to boot).

THE MOUSE AND THE FROG 1934

PROD: Wan Brothers

HDCAM, b/w, silent w/ English s/t, 15 min.

PIGSY EATS WATERMELON 1958

DIR: Wan Guchan

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 20 min.

LITTLE TADPOLES LOOK FOR THEIR MOTHER 1960

DIR: Te Wei, Tang Cheng / Shanghai Animation Film Studio

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 10 min.

THE COWHERD’S FLUTE 1963

DIR: Te Wei, Qian Jiajun

HDCAM, color, 20 min.

THREE MONKS 1980

DIR: A Da

HDCAM, color, 20 min.

TRT: 85 min.

Tuesday, October 23 8:30 pm @ REDCAT

US Premiere

BEIJING FLICKERS 2012

DIR/PROD: Zhang Yuan. SCR: Zhang Yuan, Kong Ergou, Li Xinyun, Yang Yishu. CAST: Duan Bowen, Lv Yulai, Shi Shi, Li Xinyun, Han Wenwen.

With BEIJING FLICKERS, Sixth Generation auteur Zhang Yuan artfully mixes documentary and fiction to delve into youth subculture in a society changing at full blast. Zhang captures the vulnerability, but also the energy and romanticism of the new “lost generation” bypassed by China’s entry into the globalized market economy. (A pop-up exhibition of the photography that inspired the film runs October 20-28 at Chinatown’s Mandarin Plaza; see the program listing above.)

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 96 min.

BEIJING FLICKERS is co-presented with the Global Film Initiative and is part of the Global Lens 2013 film series.

Preceded by

West Coast Premiere

SOME ACTIONS WHICH HAVEN’T BEEN DEFINED YET IN THE REVOLUTION 2011

DIR/PROD/SCR: Sun Xun.

Animated using woodblock prints, SOME ACTIONS uses pulsating, hallucinatory imagery to evoke a Kafkaesque atmosphere of grotesquery, anxiety and vague ideological constrictions.

HDCAM, color, 13 min.

In person: Zhang Yuan, Li Xinyun

Friday, October 26 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

International Premiere

DOUBLE XPOSURE 2012

DIR: Li Yu. PROD: Fang Li. SCR: Li Yu, Fang Li. CAST: Fan Bingbing, Feng Shaofeng, Huo Siyan, Joan Chen, Yao Anlian.

This stylish and briskly paced psychological thriller by one of China’s leading female directors plumbs thriller staples of dualities and doubling to a clincher of an ending. Joan Chen in a supporting role impresses, as does Chinese superstar Fan Bingbing as a young urbanite whose façade of certainties and comforts violently splinters in a moment of jealousy.

35mm, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 105 min.

In person: Li Yu

Saturday, October 27 2:00-3:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

FILM AS CULTURE | CULTURE IN FILM

A panel discussion on the interactive relationship between the film industry and Chinese culture. The thought-provoking conversation will broach the implications of Chinese politics, consumerism and the global influence reflected through films in a country that has quickly become one of the most powerful economies in the world.

Panelists TBA; free admission

This program is presented by the UCLA Anderson Center for Global Management, UCLA Center for Chinese Studies and UCLA Film & Television Archive.

Saturday, October 27 4:00 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

US Premiere

THREE SISTERS 2012

DIR: Wang Bing. PROD: Sylvie Faguer, Mao Hui. CAST: Sun Ying, Sun Zhen, Sun Fen, Sun Shunbao, Sun Xinliang.

Acclaimed documentarian Wang Bing observes the lives of three young sisters (aged ten, six and four), left to fend for themselves in a remote village in the Yunnan highlands. Their mother is gone, and their father works in a town far away. Despite their hard life and constant toil, the little girls are playful and affectionate towards each other… until one day when their father comes home.

Blu-Ray, color, Yunnan dialect w/ English s/t, 153 min.

Saturday, October 27 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

US Premiere

THE DITCH 2010

DIR/SCR: Wang Bing. PROD: K. Lihong, Mao Hui, Philippe Avril, Francisco Villa-Lobos, Sebastien Delloye, Dianba Elbaum. CAST: Lu Ye, Lian Renjun, Xu Cenzi, Yang Haoyu, Cheng Zhengwu, Jing Niansong.

In his first dramatic feature, director Wang Bing vividly recreates the brutal conditions at a Gobi Desert labor camp where some 3,000 intellectuals were sent in the late 1950s. Digging the eponymous ditch, the prisoners seem resigned to death until a woman appears, searching for her husband, inspiring some to plot an escape. Emphasizing sensory details, THE DITCH is a visceral experience about a rarely discussed period of Chinese history.

35mm, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 109 min.

This program has been made possible with funding support from the UCLA Center for Chinese Studies.

Sunday, October 28 4:00 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

US Premiere

THE CREMATOR 2012

DIR/SCR: Peng Tao. PROD: Gao Hong. 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, and secretly sells “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 affords him unexpected dignity and grace.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 90 min.

Preceded by

West Coast Premiere

SOME ACTIONS WHICH HAVEN’T BEEN DEFINED YET IN THE REVOLUTION 2011

DIR/PROD/SCR: Sun Xun.

Animated using woodblock prints, SOME ACTIONS uses pulsating, hallucinatory imagery to evoke a Kafkaesque atmosphere of grotesquery, anxiety and vague ideological constrictions.

HDCAM, color, 13 min.

Sunday, October 28 7:00 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

North American Premiere

FENG SHUI 2012

DIR: Wang Jing. SCR: Wu Nan. Based on a novel by Fang Fang. CAST: Yan Bingyan, Jiao Gang, Chen Gang.

Li Baoli appears to have a secure, working-class family with bright prospects for upward mobility, but the Wuhan shopkeeper’s helper seems incapable of inner peace. Viewed with grave concern by family and friends, she harasses and belittles her husband until he is driven to extremes, whereupon life takes a drastic turn. Veteran actor Yan Bingyan delivers a knockout performance as Li Baoli, a woman perpetually clouded with confusion as to why her life is in such disarray.

HDCAM, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 120 min.

Wednesday, October 31 7:30 pm @ UCLA FTV Archive

Los Angeles Premiere / Special Halloween Screening!

PAINTED SKIN: THE RESURRECTION 2012

DIR: Wuershan. Producer: Chen Kuo-fu, Pang Hong, Wang Zhonglei. SCR: Ran Ping, Ran Jia’nan. CAST: Zhou Xun, Vicki Zhao, Chen Kun, Mini Yang, William Feng.

The highest-grossing Chinese film ever, this visually sumptuous take on one of the Qing-era Pu Songling tales of the fantastic, pairs humans and demons haunted by romantic longings. After being imprisoned under a frozen lake for centuries, fox spirit Xiaowei meets Princess Jing, who hides her disfigured face under a mask. If they exchange identities, however, Jing could be beautiful again, and Xiaowei could become a woman…

Blu-Ray, color, Putonghua w/ English s/t, 131 min.

**********

CHINA ONSCREEN BIENNIAL: VENUE AND TICKET INFORMATION FOR LOS ANGELES

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Linwood Dunn Theater

Academy’s Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study

1313 Vine Street

Hollywood

CA 90028

Tickets: $5 general admission. $3 Academy members and students with valid ID. On sale beginning October 1 at www.oscars.org, or at the Academy Box Office located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills, CA 90211.

Parking: Complimentary in the Academy’s lot adjacent to the Pickford Center; enter off Homewood, one block north of Fountain. Parking facilities close 30 minutes after the conclusion of an event.

Information: www.oscars.org

Film at REDCAT (Jack H. Skirball Series)

REDCAT

Walt Disney Concert Hall Complex

631 West 2nd Street (at the corner of 2nd and Hope Streets)

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Tickets: $10 general admission. $8 for REDCAT members and non-CalArts students. $5 for CalArts students, faculty and staff. Online tickets available at www.redcat.org; click on the individual program.

Parking: Walt Disney Concert Hall parking garage; enter from 2nd Street and proceed to level P3 for direct access to REDCAT. $9 after 4:00 pm on Mondays-Fridays / $5 after 8:00 pm. $9 flat rate on weekends

Information: www.redcat.org, 213.237.2800

Pomona College

Rose Hill Theatre

Smith Campus Center

170 East 6th Street

Claremont, CA 91711

Free admission

Information: mediastudies.pomona.edu


Pop-Up Gallery, Chinatown

Mandarin Plaza, Suites 109-110

970 North Broadway

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Opening reception with filmmaker Zhang Yuan starts at 4:00 pm on Saturday, October 20

Free admission. Gallery opens Tuesday-Saturday 10:00 am-6:00 pm, Sunday 12:00-5:00 pm. Closed on Monday.

Parking: $3 flat rate in lot on north side of Mandarin Plaza; enter from Broadway. Metered street parking.

Information: www.chinatownla.com, 213.680.0243

UCLA Film & Television Archive

Billy Wilder Theater

Courtyard Level, Hammer Museum

10899 Wilshire Boulevard (at the intersection of Wilshire and Westwood Boulevards)

Los Angeles, CA 90024

Tickets: $10 online. $9 general admission, $8 for non-UCLA students, seniors and UCLA Alumni Association members (ID required) if purchased at the box office only. Free admission for UCLA students (current ID required); free tickets available on a first-come, first-served basis at the box office until 15 minutes before showtime, or the rush line afterwards. Online tickets available at www.cinema.ucla.edu/calendar; click on the individual program.

Free admission: Only for the “Film As Culture | Culture in Film” panel discussion at 2:00 pm on Sunday, October 27.

Parking: Museum parking lot; enter from Westwood Blvd, just north of Wilshire. $3 flat rate after 6:00 pm on Mondays-Fridays and all day on weekends.

Information: www.cinema.ucla.edu, 310.206.8013

dGenerate Films c/o Icarus Films  |  
(p) (718) 488-8900 | info@dgeneratefilms.com
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