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Singing in the Wilderness

Directed by Dongnan Chen
2021
China
98 minutes
All Ages
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The heart-rending and revealing story of a Christian choir from a rural community in China who are ‘discovered’ by authorities and turned into a national commodity.
‘Ghosts haunt the village, but when we sing, they disappear.’ So say the residents – all of minority Miao ethnicity – of Little Well, Yunnan province. The village choir, comprised of local farmworkers led by conductor Long, sing religious anthems in the local church. But ‘county propaganda minister’ Zhang is out to exploit their talents, and before long they’re performing ABBA’s ‘Mamma Mia’ on a TV talent show and their village is turned into a tourist attraction. Director Dongnan Chen’s beautiful but sad documentary, crafted with a top-class team, was selected for the Rotterdam and Thessaloniki Film Festivals.
A touching and rewarding example of deceptively low-key political documentary.
Neil Young, Screen International
Rather remarkably, Dongnan Chen gained the trust of both the villagers and government officials, who gave her access to candid moments and intimate conversations.
Patricia Boero, The Film Verdict

Tickets

Wed 8 Jun
6:15pm
Palace Central Cinemas
Past Event Cancel
Mon 13 Jun
4:15pm
Event Cinemas George Street - Cinema 3
Past Event Cancel
Program Strand
International Documentaries
Original Title
旷野歌声
Year
2021
Classification
All Ages
Country
China
Language
In Chinese with English subtitles
Director
Dongnan Chen
Producer
Dongnan Chen, Qi Zhao, Violet Du Feng
Cinematographer
Jisong Li
Editor
Emelie Mahdavian, Nanfu Wang
Premiere
Australian Premiere
Genre
Documentary, Music, Human Rights, Politics & Economics, Asia, Religion & Belief
Company Credits
Production Company: Tail Bite Tail Films
Official Website
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