Reality Check: Taiwanese Short Films

Reality Check: Taiwanese Short Films

Event: Reality Check :Taiwanese Short Films
Time: Tuesday 9 April 2019, 21.00
Venue: Curzon Bloomsbury

Our Suite de Danses (我們的組曲)

Artist, Director: SHAKE
2016 | Art | Mandarin, Pangcah | 7 min


Taiwan’s unique landscape and geopolitical history serves as a theme for The Subduction Zone. Located at the subduction zone where the Eurasian Plate converges with the Philippine Sea Plate, the island of Taiwan has developed a unique topography as a result of the downwelling tectonic activity. Similarly, Taiwan’s position at the boundaries of different political forces within the global geography, and the hidden forces exerted by political, economic, cultural, and ideological plates, have shaped its national identity. Our Suite de Danses which is 3rd chapter of The Subduction Zone is in cooperation with Taipei Municipal Fuxing Senior High School students. Shake invited these participant-students to share: Which songs make them recall their childhood? Which songs remind them of their parent’s generation? Which songs do they learn in school? They appropriate the military parade (which still could be found in Taiwanese school activities) as the narrative form to perform the selected songs, and shoot the video at the Jili Badlands which caused by the subduction process. In order to represent the constitution of culture and education in Taiwan, the participant-students try to re-interpret the songs which express their generation and cultural identity in front of this specific landscape because it displays Taiwan’s geographical changes.

In Trance We Gaze (恍惚與凝視的練習)

Director: Chen Singing 陳芯宜
2018 | Art, Doc | Taiwanese, Mandarin | 20min


Under constant regimes of discipline and incorporation, rituals, faiths, bodies, and the position of man and god all trend towards uprootedness, where we lose our links to the land and to others. Time is dissected into ever more infinitesimal parts. Those who could not keep up appear within the gaze of a stopped frame. All destruction and rebirth meet at this point in search of a safe corner.

The Glamorous Boys of Tang (唐朝綺麗男)

Director: Su Hui-yu 蘇匯宇
2018 | Taiwan | Art | 15min


In artist Su Hui-yu’s signature style, a moody slow-motion pan captures a wild, glitter-scattered, blood-splattered orgy during the Tang dynasty. The film is an invocation of scenes from 1985 Taiwanese cult film Tang Chao Chi Li that only existed in the screenplay, unfilmed until now due to what can only be imagined as budgetary restrictions and censorship pressures during the Martial Law era. Presented without narrative context, the orgiastic murder scene plays out like an unsettling nightmare. Su Hui-Yu has re-created The Glamorous Boys of Tang to call together the differently gendered bodies and subcultures of Taiwan’s diverse society.

Blossom (繁花盛開)

Director: Lin Han 林涵
2017 | Taiwan | Mandarin | 25min


A life of a person is an endless search of one’s sense of belonging. What kind of family can provide a complete belonging if one can choose? In Taiwan, it is already tough for those who wants to create a family with a child of one’s own due to the economic and social consensus. Not to mention for the marginalised transgendered community, there is a great revolution of equalisation that has not yet succeeded. Cherry identified herself as a drag queen. Before the show, she found out her boyfriend had been cheating sleeping with another girl for awhile. Pulled herself together she walked on her way to work, she met with an abandoned baby. When she was performing sparkly on the stage with her close sister, Lena, they discovered something weird about this baby…

I Have Nothing To Say (媽媽的口供)

Director: Ying Liang 應亮
2017 | Taiwan, Hong Kong | Mandarin | 25min


This is how a Chinese mother is made.
A trip. A third land, Taiwan.
An exiled daughter.

Taiwan Province of China (不曾消失的台灣省)

Director: FU Yue 傅榆
2018|Taiwan|Mandarin|24 min


As someone who grew up in a family that wasn’t originally from Taiwan, I didn’t identify with ‘Taiwan’ at first. With the term ‘Taiwan Province’ now consigned to the dustbin of history, I aim to review my past from the vantage point of one’s ‘province of origin’.

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