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Chinese Film Series: "A time to live and a time to die"

Ciclo de cine chino:

Within the framework of the exhibition "Ming. The Golden Empire", CaixaForum Barcelona presents an ambicious activity programme where films have a special presence, with a selection of 5 films.


The titles that are part of the project are some of the most representative in the field of independent cinematographic production that since 2000 until now have been developed in China and that in less than a decade have experimented considerable growth.

Casa Asia's selection contemplates three areas that the film industry in this country approaches, between Continental China (Chen Kaige, Zhang Yimou and Jia Zhangke), Hong Kong (Wong Kar-wai) and Taiwan (Hou Hsiao-Hsien). These five directors are an expression of a way of understanding and making films that sporadically reach our screens, despite touring around main international film festivals and having received recognition.

Chen Kaige and Zhang Yimou belong to the called fifth generation of Chinese cinema with a highlighted director, Wu Tianming; the three of them make up the first generaiton of film directors that left the Beijing Film Academy after the end of the Cultural Revolution. The title of the series is named after a film by the director Hou Hsiao-Hsien, whose last work is included, awarded in Cannes last year. The five films that have been gathered respond to the semantic value of their layers of meaning and give special keys to understand the films of the new generations made in China in the last 15 years.


Monday, 20th of June 2016, 8.00pm

Together Dir. Chen Kaige | 2002 | 117’ | VOSE

Liu Xiaochun is a young violinist whose father, a humble province cook, decides to invest all his savings in taking them to Beijing to offer him the opportunity to go to a well known music school. There, Liu meets a bohemian and depressive teacher who shares his art with young people with talent, able to express feelings through music. His new life, far from his family but full of hope, marks the beginning of a new period that will teach him to be a musician but especially to be a man.

Presentation of the series hosted by:
Menene Gras Balaguer, Culture and Exhibition Director and Casa Asia Film Week Director

Tuesday 28th of June de 2016, 8.00pm

Flowers of War, Dir. Zhang Yimou | 2011 | 146’ | VOSE

In 1937, during the second Chinese-Japanese war, John Miller, a make up artist, arrives in a Catholic church in Nankin to prepare the priest before his burying. That night the Japanese imperial army beats the Chinese army in the city, beginning a bloody massacre. The church becomes a refugee centre, where there are inocent school girls and a group of prostitutes that try to survive the civil persecution caused by invasion. In this situation, Miller presents to be a priest to save the group and plan their runaway.

Monday, 11th of July 2016, 8.00pm

El Arte de la Guerra (The Grandmaster), Dir. Wong Kar-wai | 2013 | 130’ | VOSE

Based on the real life of Yip Kai-man, Great Wing Chun Master and trainer of Bruce Lee, this marcial art drama accounts his return to Hong Kong after the second Chinese-Japanese war, as well as the events that lead to his death. Yip Kai-man's peaceful life is threatened by the arrival of Gong Yutian, the Great Master of North China. This announces his withdrawal from the world of marcial arts and after naming San Man his successor in the North, he applies for the naming of the Great Master of the South. This starts a violent combat between fighters, an avid competence to achieve the title of Great Master.

Monday 18th of July 2016, 8.00pm

A Touch of Sin, Dir. Jia Zhangke | 2013 | 130’ | VOSE

Through the story of four characters in different provinces, the film suggests a reflection on contemporary Chinese society, characterised by colosal economic development and more and more present violence in every day lifeA. Dahai, a miner who is angry of the corruption within leaders of his village, decides to do something about it; San’er, an emigrant, discovers the infinite possibilities his arm offers him; Xiaoyu, a sauna receptionist, faces the frequent harassment of a rich client and Xiaohui suffers the consequences of degradant work conditions in the country. The film shows the increase in violence indexes that have been registered in China in the last 5 years, as a result of economic and social changes that in name of progress and wellbeing society have been carried out in China.

Monday 25th of July 2016, 8.00pm

The Assassin, Dir. Hou Hsiao-Hsien | 2015 | 105’ | VOSE

Set in 8th century China, “The Assassin tells the story of Nie Yinniang, a strict young woman educated by a nun who initiates her in marcial arts. Her purpose is to eliminate the tyrans but after few years in exile, she returns to her family's house with th intention to have a normal life with her partner. However, her master gives her a new mission; to kill her cousin Tian Ji’an, disident governor of the military province of Weibo. Nie will have to choose between sacrificing her future with the man she loves or breaking up with the ‘Sect of Assassins’. The poetics of this Taiwanese film director is in the origin of the beauty of scenes that are parts of a barroque story that updates an ancient legend, without contradicting the minimalism that characterises it.

2016/06/20 > 2016/07/25

Between the 20th of June and the 25th of July 2016

CaixaForum Barcelona
Av. De Francesc Ferrer i Guárdia, 6-8

Price of the ticket: 4 Euros

Obra Social "la Caixa", in collaboration with Casa Asia
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