by Marzia De Giuli
VENICE, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) -- Several Chinese-language films will be seen in the Venice film festival, which prepares to inaugurate its 71st edition in the Italian iconic water city on Wednesday.
Chuangru zhe (Red Amnesia), directed by Wang Xiaoshuai, is among the 20 titles competing for the Golden Lion, the highest prize given to a film at the festival.
The film tells the story of Deng, a retired widow who spends her days caring about her two grown up sons and her elderly mother, despite her family's efforts to stop her. Her daily routine starts derailing when she keeps receiving anonymous calls.
Wang said in a statement that he was inspired by his 70-year-old mother who, after his father's death, still wanted to take care of the director and of her grandchildren. “Her life made me reflect on Chinese people's way of life,” Wang said.
Qin’ai de (Dearest) directed by Peter Ho-sun Chan and played by Chinese actress Zhao Wei, will be unveiled in the Out of Competition selection.
The film's story is centered on a couple, Tian Wenjun and his ex-wife Lu Xiaojuan, who find their ordinary lives thrown into complete turmoil when their son goes missing.
Overwhelmed with guilt, they comb through half the country in search of him and hope is the only thing that gives them a reason to live.
One day, they encounter another couple who lost their child and introduce them to a support group that is dedicated to locating missing children.
Tian and Lu eventually find their long lost son, Peng, in a remote village but when they return home with him they find out he has changed and sees them as strangers.
Huangjin shidai (The Golden Era) by Ann Hui, played by Chinese actress Tang Wei, will be the closing film of the Venice film festival, which ends on Sept. 6.
The film is about the story of Xiao Hong, one of the most famous female writers, who lived through the most turbulent times in contemporary China.
Ann Hui said in a statement she was fascinated by Xiao Hong’s life story ever since she came across her novels in the 1970s.
Xiao’s estrangement from her father sparked a long quest for an emotionally satisfying life. She was rescued from poverty by writer Xiao Jun, but their competitive relationship brought her more heartache than joy.
While escaping the Japanese invasion, she married novelist Duanmu Hongliang and fled together to Hong Kong, which fell to the Japanese later. She died of tuberculosis at the age of 31.
Da shu (Great Heat) directed by Chen Tao, which depicts a silent and unusual friendship, will be shown in the Orizzonti-Short Films selection, a competition dedicated to films that represent the latest aesthetic and expressive trends in international cinema.
Chinese-language film makers have witnessed their best years at Venice under the festival's former artistic director Marco Muller, with multiple Golden Lions won by directors including Ang Lee and Zhang Yimou.