I Wish I Knew

Director: Jia Zhangke
Stars: Zhao Tao, Lim Giong, Lin Xudong

Jia Zhangke’s last film, 24 City, was about the difficulty of locating a personal perspective within Chinese history. His follow-up, I Wish I Knew, continues the project while narrowing its scope to a single city — Shanghai. Contrasting archival footage with contemporary images captured by the great cinematographer Yin Luk-wai, Jia locates the city as the epicentre of an entire country’s social and economic upheaval. This is less a documentary than a cinematic essay, and it’s heady, rewarding stuff.

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