Taiwan Film Festival

Saturday, July 29, 2006

2006 Taiwan Film Festival

The 2006 Taiwan Film Festival, to be held in four universities in late September and early October 2006, will showcase prominent both feature films and the work of Taiwan’s newest and most promising documentary filmmakers: Chen Lung-nan, Chien Wei-ssu, Juang Yi-Tseng, Kuo Chen-ti, Lin Yu-Hsien, Tang Shiang-Chu, and Yen Lan-Chuan.

A surprisingly of the important works of Taiwan feature filmmakers depicting the changes of Taiwan have rarely been screened in the US. Films such as Hou Hisao-Hsian’s coming-of-age trilogy present the realities of life and the beautiful scenery of Taiwan country side while “Pushing Hand” (Ang Lee) depict the conflicts and bafflement between generations coming from different cultural traditions. More recent works such as “The Straits Story” show an artist’s pursue of love, art and life in the 1920s while “The Passage” captures unrequited love and fascination with ancient art and its history.

While Taiwan feature filmmaking may have languished in recent years, documentary filmmaking has exploded. In a context of growing democratization, new debates over Taiwanese identity, and the spread of inexpensive digital cameras and editing software, documentary films in Taiwan have soured in number and in popularity. They have also been winning critical acclaim both domestically and abroad.

Nonetheless – and far more so compared to feature films -- Taiwanese documentary films are rarely screened and little known in the U.S. This series aims to fill this gap, presenting the best in recent documentary filmmaking in Taiwan. The series will also feature the latest work by the renowned German filmmaker Monica Treut, an engaging portrait of three women in modern Taiwan (including filmmaker DJ Chen).

The goal of this film festival is to showcase prominent Taiwanese film works. Program on each campus will include four double-feature screenings, pairing one feature film with one documentary film, showing a total of eight films. The documentaries and features for each screening will be selected to compliment each other in depicting a specific time period or to offer parallel windows onto a specific aspect of Taiwan society, history, politics, or culture. Altogether, the film festival will serve to introduce the ever-changing faces of Taiwan.

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