6 doc films about Asia at Silverdocs 2012

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For its 10ths anniversary, Silverdocs will have some Asian flavour. During 7 days (June 18-24, 2012), audience will be able to discover 6 doc films about Asia, from Canada,  China, Korea and USA.

  • THE VANISHING SPRING LIGHT

Xun Yu “Fish”  | 2010 | China  | Silver Spectrum | 112 min.

Director Xun Yu uses a thoughtful approach to look at the loss of the traditional role of elders in China as reflected in the approaching redevelopment of a Silk Road avenue. Yu’s subject, the frail but coarse Grandma Jiang, is treated as a burden by her son’s family and mostly forgotten by her faraway daughters. A harrowing portrait of a life forgotten to the shifts in Chinese society and the concept of family, the film is a reminder of what’s shunted aside in the name of modernization. – DB (Silverdocs)

  • THE WORLD BEFORE HER

Nisha Pahuja  | 2011 | Canada  | Sterling World Competition | 90 min.

In modern day India, a group of ambitious young women undergo a month-long beauty boot camp regimen to compete in the Miss India pageant, which, for some, is one of the few avenues of success and independence for Indian women. In contrast is Durga Vahini, the women’s wing of the Hindu fundamentalist movement and its charismatic camp leader, Prachi, who stands in direct opposition to her forward-thinking pageant contemporaries. Instead of beauty tips, these young women learn combat training and obedience to men. In THE WORLD BEFORE HER, filmmaker Nisha Pahuja examines two diametrically opposed sides to women’s issues in contemporary India with fascinating results. – AP (Silverdocs)

Official film website

  • TOKYO WAKA

John Haptas, Kristine Samuelson  | 2012 | USA  | Silver Spectrum | 63 min.

Japanese silk screens challenge our Western eyes to forget vanishing points and find depth by pondering relationships on the tableau. This introspective essay on Tokyo and its innumerable crows draws us in with similar deep focus and artful intent. Told as much from the birds’ perspective as it is from the city’s human residents, it speaks volumes about the interplay between who is being watched, who is doing the watching and the circle of life. – ASH (Silverdocs)

Film page

Trailer

  • PLANET OF SNAIL

Seungiun Yi  |  2011 | Korea  |  Sterling World Competition | 90 min.

The poetry of the cinema merges fantastically with the poetry of touch, taste and smell when filmmaker Seung-Jun Yi encounters the deaf and blind South Korean poet Young-Chan. Through visually striking imagery and intimate detail, we see what it takes to forge a life of creative productivity and erotic happiness for a remarkable figure unwilling to accept as limitations the world of sight and sound from which he is isolated. – SS (Silverdocs)

Official film website

  • CHINA HEAVYWEIGHT

Yung Chang  | 2011 | Canada / China | Silver Spectrum | 89 min.

For many young men and women in southwestern China, the ability to throw a good punch can determine the course of the rest of their lives. Recruited from rural areas by demanding state scouts, these young athletes are taken to training centers where their natural talents are nurtured with grueling intensity as sights are set on bringing honor to their nation at the Olympics. At the same time, their charismatic coach Qi Moxiang trains for an important fight himself, determined to return to the ring as a champion in his late 30s. – AP (Silverdocs)

  • AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY

Alison Klayman  | 2010 | USA | Silver Spectrum | 91 min.

Controversial Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has made a name for himself through his unique conceptual art, use of social media to express political dissent and a penchant for butting heads with the Chinese government. Filmmaker Alison Klayman takes the viewer inside Weiwei’s world as he gives unprecedented access to his work process and personal life. Providing a window to some of the problems surrounding contemporary China, Ai Weiwei remains an unflinching bastion of strength in the midst of oppression. – AP (Silverdocs)

About Silverdocs

Celebrating its 10th anniversary, Silverdocs is the most talked about documentary festival in the United States, called “Non-Fiction Nirvana” by Variety, the “Pre-eminent documentary Festival in the US” by Screen International and the “premiere showcase for documentary film” by Hollywood Reporter. Silverdocs encompasses a seven-day international film festival and five-day concurrent conference that promotes documentary film as a leading art form, supports the work of independent filmmakers and fosters an atmosphere for public dialogue and civic engagement around the issues and ideas explored in the films. Silverdocs plays host to more than 27,000 attendees from across the globe with a diverse range of films, filmmakers and film subjects representing more than 60 countries.

Silverdocs was created through a unique alliance between AFI and the Discovery Channel, the festival’s Founding Sponsor.
The 10th annual Festival is set for June 18-24, 2012.

This year’s Awards include STERLING AWARDS (US FEATURE COMPETITION, WORLD FEATURE COMPETITION, SHORT FILM COMPETITION and AUDIENCE AWARD

Silverdocs website

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