24 City (Er shi si cheng ji) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

24 City (Er shi si cheng ji) Reviews

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Top Critic
G. Allen Johnson
San Francisco Chronicle
July 31, 2009
24 City won't change the minds of detractors -- it is his most painfully slow yet -- but it might change the minds of his supporters, including this critic, for Jia attempts something that is, in the end, unforgivable.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
July 30, 2009
As far as nonfiction goes, you probably won't seen anything else this year so beautifully filmed.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Amber Wilkinson
Eye for Film
June 28, 2009
This blending of the truth and invention is a key plank of Chinese director Jia Zhang-Ke's work, which skates so close to documentary it is hard to spot the join.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Avi Offer
NYC Movie Guru
June 7, 2009
Compelling and provocative with powerful images and quietly moving interviews that shed light on impact of social, economical and political changes on factory workers in China.
Full Review | Original Score: 9.0/10
Jennifer Merin
June 6, 2009
Jia Zhangke uses documentary and narrative storytelling in "24 City," an extraordinary chronicling of how deconstruction of an aviation factory in Chengdu, China, effects the lives of 30,000 workers for whom the factory was not just a job, but a way of li
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
June 5, 2009
The result is surprisingly engrossing -- even lively, due in part to brief musical numbers inserted amid the interviews.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
June 5, 2009
Mr. Jia is an artist, one of the most interesting filmmakers working anywhere in the world, and he made his film to bear witness to a way of life while witnesses could still be found.
Top Critic
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
June 5, 2009
The actors in 24 City, an experimental fiction-nonfiction hybrid, bring their own existential realities to their short, touching performances.
Top Critic
Scott Tobias
AV Club
June 4, 2009
Mostly, 24 City falls into the same Jia trap of inadvertently drawing the viewers' gaze past his human subjects and to the poetic images of a country in painful metamorphosis.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Chris Cabin
June 4, 2009
becomes whatever the viewer wants it to be.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Keith Uhlich
Time Out
June 3, 2009
Jia is one of the guiding lights of the sixth generation of Chinese filmmakers, and 24 City is a potent exploration of his constant theme -- the tectonic shifts that occur as the old gives way to the new.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/6
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
June 3, 2009
This subversively old-fashioned hymn to industrial production is filled with offbeat, vaguely absurd details.
Maria Garcia
Film Journal International
June 2, 2009
Celebrated filmmaker Jia Zhangke melds fiction and non-fiction filmmaking to portray the new betrayals in store for the Chinese as they shift to capitalism--ones not very different from the old betrayals of a paternalistic society.
Louis Proyect
May 30, 2009
Brilliant evocation of Maoist-minded workers alienated by China's bourgeois transformation.
Top Critic
Jeff Shannon
Seattle Times
May 7, 2009
With this moody and curiously effective follow-up to his critically acclaimed drama Still Life, director Jia Zhang-Ke paints another vivid portrait of China devastated by commercial 'progress.'
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Jim Slotek
Jam! Movies
March 20, 2009
24 City is best viewed with no pretense of it being a documentary. Thus absolved of having to provide context, it can be appreciated for its narrative, a past-meets-present series of melodramas.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
March 20, 2009
The boom-and-bust cycle that afflicts company towns in capitalist countries also dogs the state-run cogmakers, as Chinese auteur Jia Zhang-ke lyrically depicts in 24 City, an ode to changing times.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Nick Schager
Lessons of Darkness
October 27, 2008
The complexity of [Zhangke's] postmodernist formal gambit nonetheless gets at something pressing.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Tim Brayton
Antagony & Ecstasy
October 27, 2008
One of the year's best... a narrative film masquerading as a documentary, and more of an essay on the status of life in a modernising China than either
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
Kevin B. Lee
Slant Magazine
October 9, 2008
Simultaneously more and less than meets the eye.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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