Film - Feature | October 12 | 5:45 p.m. | Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive
The second of two films Zheng made to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the founding of the Peoples Republic, this biopic celebrates the life of Nie Er, the young composer of the PRCs national anthem, March of the Volunteers, who died at the age of twenty-three. Whereas Zhengs first anniversary-related film, Lin Zexu, was a lavish, adventure-filled Opium Warset costumer filled with political intrigue, Nie Er observes the more artistic and cultural achievements of the Republic, following Nie from his college beginnings to his musical blossoming in 1930s Shanghai, and (of course) his eventual anti-imperialist awakening. (The films focus on such bourgeois musical endeavors, and especially its celebration of pre-Republic Shanghais cultural scene, later led to ruthlessly attacks from Red Guard critics.) Shot in gorgeous color, Nie Er is a fascinating communist flipside to fifties Hollywood music biographies.
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