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Chinese film “Tuya’s Marriage” wins in Berlin

Posted by Author on February 20, 2007

By Erik Kirschbaum and Mike Collett-White, Reuters, Feb 17, 2007-

BERLIN (Reuters) – Chinese movie “Tuya’s Marriage”, which explores the environmental and human cost of the country’s rapid economic growth through the lives of Mongolian herders, won the Berlin film festival’s top honor on Saturday.

The Golden Bear for best picture makes it a pair for Chinese cinema at Europe’s top film festivals, after similarly themed “Still Life” won the Golden Lion in Venice in September.

“Tuya’s Marriage” is set against the desertification of remote parts of China, which is forcing traditional shepherds into towns and cities, while “Still Life” concerns the upheaval caused by the giant Three Gorges Dam project.

“I think that it is important, particularly in this time when the economy is booming, to ponder and reflect on what we’re losing,” director Wang Quan’an said of “Tuya’s Marriage”.

“Once we’ve lost them (culture and tradition), we’ll never be able to get them back,” he told reporters after the prize ceremony.

“The best films aren’t those that solve problems or give answers, but those that simply show things as they are … that portray life authentically. That means we start to think about the lives of other people.”

Tuya, the shepherdess who seeks a new husband after hers falls ill, is played by Yu Nan, who was among the favorites to win the best actress Silver Bear in Berlin this year.

That prize eventually went to Nina Hoss for “Yella”, the third German actress to win the award in three years.

Yu learned to ride a horse and camel and herd sheep for the part.

“It was my first time in (inner) Mongolia and I needed four to five months to get accustomed to life there,” she said. “It may well be that these people have to move into the towns and cities, and I really appreciated the chance to make the film.” ……

more details from  Reuters

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