Asia and the Pacific Screens
Red Persimmons 満山紅柿:上山柿と人とのゆきかい
5:30pm - 7:30pm
03 Dec 2014
The Auditorium, China in the World Building (188), Fellows Lane, ANU
Ogawa Shinzuke’s form of partisan filmmaking has influenced subsequent generations of documentary filmmakers in Japan, East Asia and beyond. Begun in the late 1980s, Red Persimmons is the culmination of Ogawa’s final project, deftly completed by his protégé, Chinese ‘fifth generation’ filmmaker Peng Xiaolian—a graduate of the Beijing Film Academy. The original footage was shot over a decade, tracking changes in the village life of Kaminoyama, a place renowned for producing dried persimmons. In 2001, Peng returned to the village to complete the story. Despite the picturesque scenery and rustic subject, the film is not a nostalgic depiction of rural life. Instead, Ogawa and Peng focus on the human agents that negotiate, and often drive the modernisation of their rural community and its ways. Tracing lives that reach across decades of war and intense economic development, the film remains stubbornly focused on the persistence of persimmon cultivation, which continues to inform the identity of this place and its people.