I Wish I Knew (Hai shang chuan qi) (2010)
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Filmmaker Jia Zhangke offers a personal look into the history of Shanghai, one of China's most exciting and diverse cities, in this documentary. While Shanghai is a city of no small historical importance in China, in Haishang Chuanqi (aka I Wish I Knew) the focus is less on the facts of the city's legacy than the stories of the people who have lived there and how their lives have been shaped by its history. Those interviewed by director Zhangke include people whose parents fell victim to the
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The poignant historical ironies of the Chinese director Jia Zhangke's documentary, commissioned by last year's Shanghai World Expo, begin with the title...
The pacing is steady. The stories are told simply, with zero affectation or buildup by the director. The effect is astonishing.
I Wish I knew is a rich, multi-faceted city film that challenges viewers to make sense of the various scraps that the filmmaker artfully arranges for our consideration.
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