Related News

Home » Feature » Events and TV

Taking the 'Night Train'

"NIGHT Train" is a dark independent film about a woman cop whose testimony sends criminals to prison, or worse. In her search for love she encounters a man who knows all about her. Yao Minji watches. Chinese independent and art house films don't make much money in China and they usually get their buzz, awards and income abroad.

Among the best known is director Jia Zhangke who won the Golden Lion at the 2006 Venice Film Festival for "Still Life," which received little attention at home.

Since the 1990s, Chinese independent and art house film makers have considered the West, especially France, a place for investment, screening and awards. It's common for their films to be premiered in France, long before they are ever screened in a few of domestic alternative venues.

One of them is Diao Yinan, a Xi'an (capital city of Shaanxi Province) native, who premiered his most recent film "Night Train" in France in 2007 at The Cannes Film Festival as an official selection. The film won the Grand Prix at the 2007 Warsaw International Film Festival.

It will screen in Shanghai tomorrow, Sunday and Tuesday at several alternative venues. Diao will speak to the audience afterward.

"Night Train," set in a small city in western China, is a dark film about a woman police investigator whose testimony is used to convict and sentence people to death.

The woman, Wu Hongyan, is depressed by seeing so many people convicted and sentenced over the years. Since her husband died 10 years ago, her personal life has been desolate.

Every weekend she takes a night train to a matchmaking agency in another town in hopes of meeting someone.

The man she falls for is the widower of a criminal sentenced to death partly because of Wu's testimony. This, of course, she does not know, but he knows who she is.

"I prefer edgy places to big cities because it's easier to see the humanistic side of people in lower life," says Diao, commenting on the film's setting.

"In Kafka's novels I love his focus on the environment of a court or some small indusrial town."

Diao studied at Beijing's Central Academy of Drama, started as a screenwriter and worked on a few popular films by Zhang Yang, a rather established director who is also in his forties.

Since 2001, Diao has been a freelancing/independent film maker working on his own scripts to convey his own ideas.

"The final presentation of the film is decided by the director and the director always wants to present himself through the film," says Diao.

It was a difficult road. Like many of his peers, Diao found it hard to get investment for his independent films. It took almost four years to get funding for his first film and another year to finance post-production.

"Night Train" is his third feature film. Many people who like independent films compare Diao with Jia Zhangke because they both focus on ordinary people, or those in society's lower stratum, living in small cities or rural areas.

Date: July 25, 1:30pm

Address: No. 20, Lane 175 Jinan Rd

Tel: 6320-1020

Date: July 25, 7pm

Address: No. 411, Lane 696 Weihai Rd

Tel: 6255-2600

Date: July 26, 1:30pm

Address: 739 Dingxi Rd

Tel: 5230-7757

Date: July 26, 7:30pm

Address: Rm101, Bldg 1, D1, 909 Tianyaoqiao Rd

Tel: 5412-0991

Date: July 28, 7:30pm

Address: 691 Jiujiang Rd

Tel: 6352-5612 Music

New Releases from High Note Records

Artist: Sonic YouthTitle: The EternalGenre: RockAfter finishing the 10-year contract with Geffen, Sonic Youth came back to the independent label system by joining the legendary label Matador. "The Eternal," their 16th album starts with a short punk melody "Sacred Trickster" featuring strong guitar sound. The album has picked up their hardcore spirit from late 1980s as if their music world had never changed.Artist: SolarstoneTitle: Electronica Architecture5Genre: Trance, TechnoSolarstone will redraw the dance music map with the release of the first chapter in his new compilation series. Compiled from the veritable arsenal of forthcoming Solaris Recordings material, "Electronica Architecture" will paint the definitive picture of Solarstone, the DJ. High Note RecordsAddress: 455 Fahuazhen RdTel: 5259-9922

Live Music

'With No Regret' Tour

Cantonese hardcore bands "Lao Fo Ye" ("Old Buddha") and "Autopuzzle" just started their national tour titled "With No Regret" for 14 days going through eight cities. They will drop in Shanghai with their new songs.

Date: August 1, 9pm

Venue: Zhijiang Dream Factory, 28 Yuyao Rd

Tel: 6227-7332

'The Radio Dept.' Live

"The Radio Dept.," a band under the famous Swedish independent label Labrador will hold three concerts in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, followed by attending a large music festival in Taiwan.

Date: July 29, 8pm

Venue: Yuyintang, 1731 Yan'an Rd W.

Tickets: 160?480 yuan

Tel: 5237-8662


German Film Screening

The German Consulate General in Shanghai organizes a "Smiling Europe" film festival, aiming to screen an European film every Friday evening, through August 7. Scheduled for tonight is a 1987 Finnish film "All Night Long" by Mika Kaurismaki and next week it features a 1999 Spanish film "Flores de Otro Mundo" ("Flowers from Another Country") by Iciar Bollain.

Date: through August 7, 7pm

Address: 102A, Cross Tower, 318 Fuzhou Rd

Tel: 6391-2068 ext 602

Plaza 96 Beer Festival with Outdoor Screenings

It's a beer festival featuring iced beer, old fashion music and classic films like "The Dictator" or "Roman Holiday." The festival ends on 31st with one screening every night.

Date: through July 31, 7pm

Venue: Plaza 96, 796 Dongfang Rd

Tel: 6320-1020


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend