(Striving), (The Struggle)
Paul Fonoroff is a film critic, historian, collector, and expert on Chinese cinema.
Weihong Bao is an associate professor of East Asian languages and cultures and film studies at UC Berkeley.
Zheng Dali will be unable to attend this screening in person as originally announced.
Zheng Junli, Chen Yanyan, Yuan Congmei, Liu Jiqun,
The tale of a young woman’s battle against her bullying father expands into a rousing cry against all tyranny in Shi Dongshan’s strikingly fresh 1932 melodrama, recently rescued from obscurity thanks to a brilliant restoration from the China Film Archive. Chinese film icons Chen Yanyan and Zheng Junli star as the young woman and the bookish neighbor who helps rescue her, but the film’s scene-stealer is its elaborate set, a massive reproduction of a Shanghai apartment building created in the studio. A surprise hit at a recent Toronto screening, Struggling shows that Chinese silent film history has wonders still to discover.