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Shot in 1994 and reflecting the dark mood in Beijing's 'underground' art circles at that time, this was an independent production - hence illegal in the eyes of the Film Bureau. The subsequent outlawing of unauthorised film-making in China forced the director to hide behind the pseudonym 'Wu Ming' (No Name). A young performance artist decides to trump the nihilism and self-destructive theatrics prevailing among the avant-garde crowd by staging a series of four symbolic deaths for himself, each coinciding with an equinox. He appears to die during the last, frozen to death on midsummer's day. But this 'death' was as much a fake as the others. A wry, semi-detached narration expresses a precise ambivalence about the protagonist and his friends, mocking their pretensions but respecting their helpless feelings of impotence in the China of the 1990s.

By: TR

Release details

Duration: 90 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Wu Ming Wang Xiaoshuai
Screenwriter: Pang Ming, Wu Ming
Cast: Jia Hongshen
Ma Xiaoqing
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