Sunday, July 29, 2007
Mention of Jia Zhangke in Paul Martin's comment on the piece on Clubland makes me put up a quick note about him and his film which still has a screening at the Brisbane festival to come to complete its trip around the Australian festival circuit. Still Life is indeed a masterpiece, as are almost all of Jia's films. Since it premiered at Venice last year and initially got generally bagged or worse dismissed by a stupefied press contingent forced to watch it at midnight, it has gone on to great critical success. It has also been sold for commercial distribution in 66 countries. Jia Zhangke also produced a film, directed by Han Jie, a member of his production company, titled Walking on the Wild Side which I was enthralled by when I saw it last year at Vancouver. It's a ripping story of a trio of juvenile delinquents playing up big time in China's backblocks. I think only the Brisbane Festival has been smart enough to pick that one up and it screens there next week as well.