China Season, Film4

12th October 2007 at 01:00
China Season, Film4

It would be a cliche to begin an article about China by banging on about the country's exploding economy and throwing in some tired old remark about the "stirring dragon". But hey, we're journalists. Thankfully, there are people around who can give you a subtler insight into life in the People's Republic. Starting this week, Film4 will be showcasing a series of hard-hitting works by native filmmakers. They include Beijing Bastards, starring Chinese rock star Jian Cui as himself, and Wen Jiang's anti-war farce, Devils On the Doorstep, about a Chinese peasant who captures occupying Japanese soldiers just as the Second World War ends and the atom bombs are dropped.

Although the film won him an award at Cannes, Wen Jiang was reportedly blacklisted and his film banned in his native country.

Another must-see is The World, set in a Beijing theme park where the wonders of the world, including the pyramids and Stonehenge, are depicted in miniature for the benefit of locals who will never leave their home country to see them.

www.channel4.comfilm

Or you could...

Gawp at the World Conker Championships held in Northamptonshire this Sunday... sketch your heart out at the Covent Garden Big Draw which runs all weekend... Slob out in front of Family Guy season six, just out on DVD.

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