Film festival offers insights into Chinese history and culture

Published 14 August 2009

horsemanA Chinese Film Festival at the University of New England this weekend will give Australian students of Chinese some vivid insights into the history and contemporary culture of China.

Organised by UNE Lecturer in Chinese Dr Shi Li, the festival comprises two of the most popular Chinese films of 2008: Red Cliff and If You Are the One.

Red Cliff, directed by John Woo, is a cinema epic based on historical events of the third century AD at the end of the Han Dynasty and immediately prior to the period of the Three Kingdoms. While the film is based primarily on the historical record Chronicle of the Three Kingdoms, the story and characters are familiar to most people in China through the great fourteenth-century novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms by Luo Guanzhong.

If You Are the One, directed by Feng Xiaogang, is a romantic comedy that takes a satirical look at the contradictions of love and marriage in contemporary Chinese society.

Both films will be screened in the A2 Lecture Theatre in UNE’s Arts Building at 5.30 pm: Red Cliff today (Friday 14 August) and If You Are the One tomorrow (Saturday 15 August). Entry is free, and there will be a brief commentary on the films, which are subtitled in English. Everyone is welcome.

The Convener of Chinese at UNE, Dr Cuncun Wu, said the festival would provide an opportunity for Chinese students studying at UNE and Australian students of Chinese to meet and discuss aspects of Chinese history and culture.