An observational essay shot in the southwestern city of Chongqing, CHINA CONCERTO probes the uses of public spectacle in contemporary China. Born and raised in Chongqing, filmmaker Bo Wang visited his hometown at the height of now-disgraced politician Bo Xilai's campaign to revive Mao-era "red culture", promoting among other things the public singing and dancing of Communist songs. Alongside these participatory street performances, CHINA CONCERTO looks at images from the media, including Michelangelo Antonioni's Chung Kuo-China, and news media and advertising that address the capitalist present in forms reminiscent of the communist past. The situation is explored in a narration modeled on Chris Marker's Sans Soleil, which is delivered by a woman with an ambiguous accent. Perched between an insider and outsider perspective, CHINA CONCERTO considers the persistence of totalitarian ideologies and images.
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