Unknown Pleasures: The Films of Jia Zhangke

9/12/08 to 10/17/08

“One of the most exciting filmmakers of our time” (Film Comment), Jia Zhangke contemplates a China perpetually reinventing itself, and the people left behind in the transition. Our retrospective surveys the observational, highly original work of this contemporary master.

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  • Platform, October 15

  • Upcoming
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Past Films

  • Still Life

    • Friday, October 17 8:30 PM

    See September 12.

  • Platform

    • Wednesday, October 15 7 PM

    A performance troupe struggles to keep up during China's 1980s move from communism to capitalism. “Might be the greatest film to come out of mainland China.”-Jonathan Rosenbaum

  • The World

    • Wednesday, October 8 7 PM

    A Vegas-style theme park in Beijing provides the lonely-planet setting for Jia's parable on China's cultural renovation: fake landscapes, real problems. “Highly original, brilliantly conceived.”-Tony Rayns

  • Unknown Pleasures

    • Friday, October 3 8:30 PM

    Teenage life in a Chinese backwater forms “as true a picture of contemporary existence as we could hope for right now.”-Film Comment

  • Useless

    • Friday, September 26 6:30 PM

    Jia's expansive investigation of Chinese industry penetrates three layers of the fashion business-a huge factory, avant-garde designer Ma Ke, and small-town tailors.

  • Xiao Shan Going Home

    • Friday, September 19 8:30 PM

    Jia's rarely screened Beijing Film Academy thesis film portrays a cook (Xiao Wu's lead actor) desperate to head home. With short In Public.

  • Xiao Wu

    • Thursday, September 18 8:20 PM

    A small-time, undermotivated pickpocket finds himself on the wrong end of China's economic leap forward. A milestone in contemporary Chinese cinema.

  • Still Life

    • Friday, September 12 6:30 PM

    The controversial Three Gorges Dam project frames two stories in Jia's examination of a city under (de)construction. Golden Lion, Venice Film Festival. Repeated on October 17.

  • Dong

    • Friday, September 12 8:45 PM

    Jia follows artist Liu Xiaodong as he paints the yang (construction workers in China) and yin (models in Bangkok) of modern Asia. With short Our Ten Years.