24 city

24 city

DVD - 2010 | Chinese
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A state-owned munitions factory is turned into a luxury high-rise apartment complex, changing the lives of three generations of workers. Bonus features include a short film, director interview, and essay by film critic Jonathan Rosenbaum.
Publisher: [Place of publication not identified] : Cinema Guild, 2010
ISBN: 9780781512916
Branch Call Number: DVD FEATURE TWENT
Characteristics: optical,stereo
1 videodisc (Not rated)(approximately 106 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in
Additional Contributors: Chen, Joan 1961-
Zhang-Ke, Jia
Alternative Title: Twenty-four city
Notes: DVD release of the 2008 motion picture


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Jul 07, 2011

Sometimes, one scene makes an entire show click. In 24 City, this moment for me was when a buyer for wealthy ladies in Chengdu, China acknowledges that she will survive because she is the daughter of factory workers. Born in the 1980s, Zhao Tao is one of the final characters we meet in this poetic take on how China is shifting.

24 City focuses on stories from three generations of residents in an area formerly known as Factory 420. In a subtle mix of documentary and fiction film-making, director Jia Zhang-ke handles his subjects carefully, akin to a portrait artist, focusing on memories of migration and the lines around the lips. Quotes from Irish writer W.B. Yeats along with music from Chinese red songs, orchestral strings and Japanese enka add to this peculiar yet strangely comforting film about the transition of an aeronautical factory into a luxury high-rise complex.

As I watched the film, I thought of the stories buildings contain. Once these places are demolished, do memories become rubble to be swept away?


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