Trương Quế Chi's film Black Sun (2013) will be screened at the Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen in the International Competition Program. The date is 6/05/2014 and the location is the Lichtburg Filmpalast theater in Oberhausen, Germany. I don't know what the time is. If anyone is in the area, check that film out. It's an amazing short film! I saw it at Yxine's website when they put it up. The film is taken down at the moment due to distribution acquisition.
Follow this link to watch an excerpt of the film: https://vimeo.com/86853664
First to notice is the languid and beautiful cinematography. It's very Tarkovskian. The shots are extended long takes and the actors' performances are hypnotic. The surrounding is a city under construction. There are many demolished buildings laying in the rubble. I won't describe too much of the film for you. You gotta see it. All I can say is it's a portrait of modern Vietnamese youth and how they are connected to past Vietnamese youth amid the political, cultural, and economic landscape of Vietnam. The connection here is the Vietnamese psych rock song " The Black Sun" by Minh Xuân & Phượng Hoàng back in the 70s right before the re-unification of North and South.
Listen to the very pessimistic song here (notice a long stretch of amazing electric guitar and sarcastic laugh at the end):
This is how the song's lyrics are translated directly into English by me who is poor in both English and Vietnamese.
"The sun is black. Black as my life. I yearn to be freed and fly to the horizon. Life feels like a strayed dog wandering at night. Love is never fulfilled. The sun doesn't want to shine, to brighten up this long dark night, to warm my life. My smile looses its innocence during my youth. All that's left are my anguishing lips. My esteem is destroyed by broken dream. The black sun still rules the night . Laughter sounds like tears dropping onto my skinny shoulder. I'm overcame with eternal sadness. I wish to forget, forget all the sadness of life. To look for love. But I still see the sun black as ink. The black sun. Black as hell (sarcastic laugh). I still see the sun black as ink. Black as hell (sarcastic laugh). I still see the sun black as ink. Black as hell (sarcastic laugh). "
This film is a great film to watch if you want to learn more about young Vietnamese at all history. It reminds me of the feature film Still Life by Jia Zhang-Ke.
Chi studied in France and graduated with a degree in film. She is a poet and wrote the award winning collection of poem titled Tôi đang lớn.
She makes film meditating on landscape by using theatrical performances to bring out its timelessness quality.
Follow this link to see her first short film: