You are here

Chinese Independent Documentary Series: Gongbu’s Happy Life

Presented by the UCLA Center for Chinese Studies and the REEL CHINA Documentary Biennial.

February 28, 2008 7:00pm to 10:00pm

Gongbu’s Happy Life, dir. Ji Dan, 1999, 82m.
This meditative documentary about the life of a Tibetan villager displays a sensitivity and understanding that the filmmaker herself gained from her three years of living in the Tibetan village.

Blossoming in the Wind, dir. Sun Yuelin, 2005, 60 mins.
As the debut work of the young filmmaker Sun Yueling, Blossoming in the Wind won the Committee Nomination Prize at the 2005 Yunnan Multi-culture Visual Forum/Festival. It is an intimate and personal record of a blissful pilgrimage by Rinpoche, a Tibetan Living Buddha. Traveling with several of his disciples and the filmmaker, Ripoche heads for a Tibetan sacred mountain in Deqing, Yunnan Province. Marching through sleet and snow, Ripoche spreads his joy and wisdom throughout the whole journey. Blue skies, white clouds, the tinkling of bells, the sound of footsteps, smiling faces, and singing voices all bask in the glow of the transparent sunshine, amidst the joyous festivities of daily life. Animals and humans alike traverse freely through the realms of the sacred land.


Independent Chinese documentary filmmaking has flourished for over a decade. Produced outside the official or commercial channels by dedicated individual filmmakers, these works—mostly in DV format—are valuable documents of alternative histories and life styles in contemporary China. For our series, we have selected documentaries—divided into five categories (history, education, documentary ethics, minorities, women and gender)—that are not only recent productions but also offer a rich, varied, up-to-date, and intimate view of contemporary China. By presenting exemplary works on various, sometimes controversial topics in different styles, we hope to stimulate discussions of not only the contents of the documentaries but the process, and sometimes the problems, of documentary filmmaking (and by extension history writing) itself.



Phone Number: