Posts Tagged ‘grace wang’

The Future of Chinese Film Criticism

Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

Wang Yang (photo credit: Grace Wang)

By Ariella Tai

In similar form to her fascinating report on Chinese Documentaries in her Chicago Sun Times-based blog, Grace Wang, has written of her search for the new face of Chinese film criticism. Somewhat surprisingly, that face belongs to a young former law student named Wang Yang, who is the founder of Youth Film Journal, the first independently published film journal in China today. This publication is virtually the only professional, non-academic, publication devoted to film criticism in contemporary China, despite the fact that the film industry is one of the fastest growing in the world, producing over 500 films in the past year.

Her extensive interview with Wang Yang reveals that, in China, there is a rapidly growing community of young, self-educated cinephiles who are hungry to write about film and share their ideas with others. As is the case with many young film critics in the modern era, both DVD and Internet culture have played an integral role in this development. Youth Film Journal provides an outlet for these voices, outside of academia or the mainstream hype bankrolled by studios. Yang provides an in-depth context for the Chinese film criticism scene and analyzes the potential of these young film critics to eventually; he hopes, compete with the current canon of criticism largely dominated by Western voices.

Several excerpts from the interview are copied after the break. For the full text, please visit Grace Wang’s blog on the Chicago Sun Times.


Report on Chinese Independent Documentaries for Roger Ebert’s Website

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

By Isabella Tianzi Cai

Directors Zhao Liang and Fan Lixin in Zhao Liang's Beijing studio (photo: Grace Wang)

An article of great interest was recently posted in the Chicago Sun Times-based blog, Etheriel Musings: A Journey in China, by Canadian-based blogger Grace Wang, who is a “Far Flung Correspondent” for Roger Ebert. In her lengthy article “Chinese Documentaries: An Inside Look,” Wang emphasizes the importance of Chinese documentaries in the world at large today: “they reflect, from the closest distance possible, in the most direct way possible, the rapid social, political, and cultural changes happening in China right now.”

What Wang believes Chinese documentaries can achieve is fascinating. She argues that Chinese documentary cinema outperforms conventional journalism in bringing “a deep and thorough look” into China because it is unconstrained by “the time-sensitive nature of the journalists’ occupation” and “the bureaucratic red-tape” within the Chinese press. Though it is not specifically noted, we shall understand that here she refers to independent documentaries made largely outside of the state-censored film and media industry.