Posts Tagged ‘gai shanxi and her sisters’

dGenerate Titles now available on Objective Cinema

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

By Isabella Tianzi Cai

Three dGenerate films are now available on Objective Cinema, a newly launched online platform for select social- and political-themed films.

The films are Ban Zhongyi’s Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters, Rachel Tejada’s Digital Underground in the People’s Republic, and Ou Ning’s Meishi Street.

Watch now on Objective Cinema:

Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters

Digital Underground in the People’s Republic

Meishi Street

The goal of Objective Cinema is to support and encourage social change at a grass roots level by making socially conscious films available to a worldwide audience. Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters documents the story around a group of Chinese women forced into sex slavery by Japanese soldiers in the Sino-Japanese War. Digital Underground in the People’s Republic penetrates the close circle of contemporary Chinese filmmakers and brings their voices to the fore. And Meishi Street archives the images of a demolished street in Beijing and the grievances of the uprooted residents for the 2008 Olympic Games.

Trailers, intros, and stills from the films are also available on Object Cinema’s website. Registered members can also rent the films online for a period of 48 hours or buy them on DVD.

Facing the Traumatic Past Between China and Japan

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010
By Isabella Tianzi Cai

Anti-Japanese demonstration in China

In September this year, Japanese authorities detained a Chinese trawler captain whose fishing boat collided with two Japanese patrol boats. The incident took place in the East China Sea, near the disputed islands known as of Senkaku in Japanese and Diaoyu in Chinese. Japan eventually released the captain following repeated requests from China. However, the incident renewed territory disputes over the islands between the two countries, and there is no sign of an effective resolution in the near future.

The clash has sparked a series of anti-Japan rallies in several major Chinese cities, where organized groups of people marched and shouted slogans such as “boycott Japan” and “return the Diaoyu Islands to us.” The crowds were dispersed peacefully by the Chinese police, but sentiments of adversity felt by many Chinese remain unmitigated.

Free Preview of New Film from Makers of Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters

Friday, May 28th, 2010

Siglo Films, the producers of Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters, have recently completed a new feature that promises to be another important look at Chinese history and society. Outside the Great Wall is a look at Chinese who are living in exile due to their involvement in free speech and democracy movements in their native country. The film will be screened this Sunday at the New York Taiwan Center. Details below:

Preview Screening of Outside the Great Wall
Sunday, May 30 – 6:30 pm
New York Taiwan Center
137?44 Northern Blvd , Flushing , NY 11354

Outside the Great Wall
Japan, 2010. 133 minutes
Directed by Han Guang
Produced by Tetsujiro Yamagami
Coproduced and edited by John Junkerman
Narrated by Roger Pulvers

At a time when China has joined the economic powerhouses of the world, it has also erected a new Great Wall against free speech and democracy, blocking the flow of information among Chinese and from overseas. This brave documentary features interviews with 12 prominent Chinese intellectuals and artists living in exile, from Nobel Prize-winning writer Gao Xingjian in Paris and novelist Zheng Yi in Washington, to Tiananmen student leaders Wang Dan and Zhang Boli, and the “Godfather of Chinese Democracy” Xu Wenli. The story of these courageous men and women, scattered to the far corners of the world, is the story of the struggle for freedom and human rights in China, from the Cultural Revolution and Tiananmen to the present. Their fight continues today.

Asia Society Film Recap: Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters (dir. Ban Zhongyi)

Continuing our recap of the Asia Society series “China’s Past, Present and Future on Film,” here is an excerpt from a full-length review by Joe Bendel of Ban Zhongyi’s groundbreaking documentary Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters:

Her name was Hou Dong E, but she was known as “Gai Shanxi,” meaning “the most beautiful woman in Shanxi Province.” Unfortunately, beauty can be a curse in a time of war. Such was certainly the case for Gai Shanxi and the other Shanxi women forced to serve as sex slaves for the occupying Imperial Japanese military during World War II. Though she never had the chance to bear witness to the atrocities she suffered, Ban Zhongyi tells the story of the former so-called “comfort woman” on her behalf in his documentary, Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters.

Though many in Japan still persistently deny “comfort women” were systematically sexually assaulted, Ban found one Japanese veteran who essentially confirms on-camera the nature and regularity of such crimes (though he understandably tries to minimize his own culpability). That alone makes Ban’s film quite an important cinematic investigation.

Ultimately, Sisters acts as a testament to a truly beautiful woman, who should have been venerated by her community in her own lifetime. Though its execution is imperfect, it is an important, sometimes angry film that should not be ignored.

Read the full review.

Find out more about Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters.

Watch clips from Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters below:

Groundbreaking Documentary Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters at Asia Society

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

by Isabel Cai and Kevin B. Lee

Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters (dir. Ban Zhongyi)

Ban Zhongyi’s documentary Gan Shanxi and Her Sisters, an important documentary about an extraordinary woman forced to serve as a sex slave during World War II, will screen at Asia Society this Friday, April 9, 2010 as part of the society’s “China’s Past, Present, and Future on Film” program. dGenerate Films’ Karin Chien will introduce the screening.

You can use discount code asia725 to buy tickets at the $7 member rate. Tickets can be purchased at the Asia Society website or at the Asia Society box office.

Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters (Gai Shan Xi He Ta De Jie Mei Men)
BAN Zhongyi. China. 2007. Documentary. 80 min. Digibeta.
Friday, April 9, 6:45 pm

The screening of Gai Shanxi comes on a wave of resurgent interest in the Japanese Occupation of China during WWII, as well as the treatment of women during the Occupation, as depicted in at least two recent notable films. How does Gai Shanxi compare? Read on, and watch a clip, after the break.


Critics Spar Over Award-Winning City of Life and Death

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010
<i>City of LIfe and Death</i> (dir. Lu Chuan)

City of Life and Death (dir. Lu Chuan)

Lu Chuan’s controversial Nanjing Massacre movie City of Life and Death picked up the Best Director award at the fourth Asian Film Awards, held during the Hong Kong International Film Festival. While the film continues to gain attention following its successful theatrical run in China and international premiere at the Toronto Film Festival last year, it has yet to be shown theatrically in the US, following an aborted spring release with National Geographic.

Meanwhile, it’s generated a bit of a quarrel among film critics. Shelly Kraicer, who reviewed the film earlier on our site, issued a lengthier critique in Cinema-scope. The review has drawn the ire of Asian film stalwart Tony Rayns (who happens to co-program the Asian film selections at the Vancouver Inernational Film Festival), who issues seven bullet-pointed rebuttals to Kraicer’s review.

On the Cineaste website, dGenerate’s Kevin B. Lee has his own take.


Discounted Tickets and Jia Zhangke in person for Asia Society series

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Our friends at the Asia Society are offering discounted tickets for their upcoming Film Series China’s Past, Present, and Future on Film, March 6 – April 16, 2010. You can use discount code asia725 to buy tickets at the $7 member rate. This includes tickets to see Jia Zhangke in-person on March 6! It’s also a chance to see several dGenerate titles on the big screen: Betelnut, Fujian Blue, Gai Shanxi and Her Sisters, and Little Moth.

Full schedule and details.

Tibetan Documentary Replaces Nanjing Massacre Movie at US Theater

Friday, February 12th, 2010

City of Life and Death (dir. Lu Chuan)

The New York Times reports that the Film Forum, one of the leading specialty theaters in New York City, has removed City of Life and Death, a movie about the 1937 Nanjing Massacre directed by Lu Chuan from their spring calendar. According to the article, National Geographic Entertainment, the North American distributor of the film, could not guarantee that a print of the film would be available in time for its scheduled release. (more…)