210 Chinese Shadows (OT: Chinese Schimmen)

Chinese Shadows (OT: Chinese Schimmen) (210)

14:00, Friday 03rd July, Theatre B


  • Director: Frank Kouwenhoven, Antoinet Schimmelpenninck (NET)
  • Year: 2007
  • Run time: 58'
  • Format: DVCAM, PAL

This is a nostalgic portrayal of the age-old art of rural shadow theatre in Huanxian in northwest China. We meet with local puppeteers, puppet makers and musicians who introduce their art with great passion. Their rough-hewn faces, the images of the arid landscape and the (equally unpolished) puppet performances determine the tone of the film. The performers are followed during a tour in the countryside, doing shows in cave dwellings and in temples. We record the disappointment of the men over the decline of their art. Yet a ray of hope remains for this tradition.

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About this Festival

Sponsored by the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain & Ireland (RAI) since 1985, it is an itinerant festival that moves biennially from one university host to another, in association with local community and cultural organisations.

The festival was held from Wednesday July 1st to Saturday July 4th 2009, and included over 50 hours of screenings of new films, a major international conference, and a targeted selection of events focusing on anthropological ethics in filmmaking, youth participatory film, and archiving ethnographic film.

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