Magazine article New Internationalist

Shanghai Dreams

Magazine article New Internationalist

Shanghai Dreams

Article excerpt

Film

Shanghai Dreams

written and directed by Wang Xiaoshuual

This is a surprising, historically revealing drama. In the late 19605 and early 19705, China's 'third front' policy tried to shift industry into the remote countryside and away from cities like Shanghai, which were vulnerable to invasion. Young idealists who went to build the factories - like writer-director Wang's parents - quickly became disillusioned and longed to return to their native cities but were never allowed to.

Wang's film is about an engineer, Zemin, who longs to return with his family to distant, prosperous, sophisticated Shanghai. He's never forgiven his wife for persuading him to move to Guizhou 15 years before. Like his fellow exiles, he looks down on the locals, and even follows his teenage daughter Ginghong to stop her seeing a local boy. …

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