NEW YORK, NY.-
As part of the monthly exhibition ContemporAsian, MoMA
showcases films that get little exposure outside of their home countries or on the international festival circuit, but which engage the various styles, histories, and changes in Asian cinema. Presented in special weeklong engagements, the films in the series include recent independent gems and little-seen classics. ContemporAsian is organized by Jytte Jensen, Curator, Department of Film, with William Phuan, independent curator, and the assistance of Laura Rugarber, Department Assistant, Department of Film, The Museum of Modern Art.
Ghost Town (2008), by Chinese director Zhao Dayong, is a tremendously rewarding film that illuminates the alienation and marginalization of the denizens of one of Chinas countless remote villages. Divided into three parts, this epic documentary brings a compassionate intimacy to its varied cast of characters, bringing audiences face to face with people who were unceremoniously left behind by Chinas new economy. Zhao displays tremendous compassion and respect for the squatters and other inhabitants of the village, and he patiently teases out the special places and attachments to which they cling. Cleverly structured and beautifully shot, the film is a gratifying, if ultimately heartbreaking, testimonial to the talent and commitment of Chinas vanguard independent documentary movement. Print courtesy of dGenerate Films. 169 min.