San Xia Hao Ren
Dir. Jia Zhangke
China 2006 | Colour | 109 mins | Cert PG | Drama
Cast: Zhao Tao, Han Sanming
Winner of the 2006 Venice Film Festival, Still Life is the vivid and absorbing tale of two individuals struggling to keep up with the dizzying pace of change in 21st century China.
Set against the spectacular landscape of the Three Gorges region along the Yangtze River, Still Life intertwines two stories of people searching for their missing partners: Han Sanming, a coal miner from Shanxi province, is looking for the wife who ran away from him sixteen years previously, while Shen Hong, a nurse, is hoping to be reunited with the husband she hasn’t heard from for two years. Their respective quests bring them to Fengjie, a town with a two-thousand-year history, currently undergoing demolition and soon to disappear forever in the flooding caused by the controversial Three Gorges Dam.
A revelatory, thought-provoking portrait of people adrift in a world they no longer recognise, Still Life also reveals their energy, resilience and ability to reach new understandings.
Available on: DCP, DVD, 35mm
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