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“The Memory Project”

November 2, 2016 @ 4:00 pm - 8:30 pm

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Film Screenings and Panel Discussions

“The Memory Project”

Jane Gaines, Columbia University
Lydia H. Liu, Columbia University
Liu Xiaolei, Film Director
Richard Peña, Columbia University
Wu Wenguang, Film Director
Ying Qian, Columbia University
Zhang Mengqi, Film Director
Zhang Ping, Film Director

November 1: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
November 2: 4:00 PM – 8:30 PM
International Affairs Building, Room 918
Registration required.
Please register here.

Co-sponsored by the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society; the C.V. Starr East Asian Library; the M.A. Program in Film and Media Studies, Columbia University; the Confucius Institute at Columbia University

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TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1:

7:00 PM – 10:00 PM:
Film Screenings and Discussion

“Self-Portrait: Dying at 47 KM” (77 min. /2015)
Directed and Edited by Zhang Mengqi

“Investigating My Father” (80 min. /2016)
Directed and Edited by Wu Wenguang

Discussion with:

Wu Wenguang, Film Director, and colleagues

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 2:

4:00 PM – 5:30 PM: Public Panel

Jane Gaines, Columbia University
Lydia H. Liu, Columbia University
Liu Xiaolei, Film Director
Richard Peña, Columbia University
Wu Wenguang, Film Director
Ying Qian, Columbia University
Zhang Mengqi, Film Director
Zhang Ping, Film Director

6:00 PM-8:30 PM:
Film Screenings and Discussion

“No Land” (40 min. /2015)
Directed and Edited by Zhang Ping

“A True Believer” (80 min. /2015)
Directed and Edited by Liu Xiaolei

Discussion with:

Wu Wenguang, Film Director, and colleagues

Nov. 1 (Tues) 7-9:30pm Two Film Screenings
1. Self-Portrait: Dying at 47 km (Zhang Mengqi, 77min, 2015)
2. Investigating My Father (Wu Wenguang, 80min, 2016)

Self-portrait: Dying at 47 KM
Directed, edited by Zhang Mengqi
77 min. /2015
Filmmaker’s words:
This is the fifth film in my “Village 47 km” film series since 2011. In 2015, my grandfather passed away. What does it mean for me to be without my grandpa? Because of my grandpa’s passing, I started to search for stories about death: the improper deaths in the past, strange deaths, deaths from hatred… How can I understand death in this village where there have been so many different kinds of deaths?

Investigating My Father
Directed, edited by Wu Wenguang
80 min. /2016
Filmmaker’s words:
This film is made by a son to investigate his father’s history. The son asks how the father changed from a man of the “old society” to a man of the “new society” after 1949. This “son” is myself. The film is a story between my father and myself.

Nov. 2 (Wed) Public Panel and Two Film Screenings

4-5:30pm Public Panel (Lydia Liu, Jane Gaines, Richard Pena and Ying Qian, with filmmakers Wu Wenguang, Liu Xiaolei, Zhang Ping and Zhang Mengqi)

6-8:30pm Two Film Screenings
1. No Land (Zhang Ping, 40 min, 2015)
2. A True Believer (Liu Xiaolei, 80min, 2015)

No Land
Directed, edited by Zhang Ping
40 min. /2015
Filmmaker’s words:
An abandoned village, a man digging a grave for himself, an illiterate former “rightist” and “anti-revolutionary” who experienced the absurdity of history, an old man, my father. This is my first film, and I did it in an unconventional way. I used still photography and sound to construct this film, to experiment whether I could build a narrative out of them. This unconventional way of expression allowed me to deepen understanding on the audio-visual medium.

A True Believer
Directed, edited by Liu Xiaolei
80 min. /2015
Filmmaker’s words:
It took me five years to make this film. I began in the style of Direct Cinema, following the members of the anti-pickpocket organization “Falcon” and asking them about their memories of a hero named “Cannon” who had passed away in action with “Falcon”. Yet, as the filming went out, my attitude began to change. At first, I had been eager to participate in their actions, using the camera to capture the thieves and punish them, while dreaming of being a hero to escape my mediocre life. Yet after witness the mutual harm done by members of the Falcon and the thieves, especially after a Uyghur boy appeared in my life, I began to turn my attention to the thieves, to ask where there were thieves in the society to begin with, and where their hatred towards the society came from. Moving away from Direct Cinema to using subjective monologues to express my own contradictory feelings towards the Falcon and the Uyghur boy, I ask how one should position himself in a world where the line between right and wrong is blurred, and whether an ordinary person’s dream of heroism could be used as a tool to change the society.

Details

Date:
November 2, 2016
Time:
4:00 pm - 8:30 pm
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