Education About Asia: Online Archives

Sunrise Over Tiananmen Square

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A FILM BY SHUI-BO WANG

A NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA PRODUCTION

DISTRIBUTED BY FIRST RUN/ICARUS FILMS 153 WAVERLY PLACE, NEW YORK NY 10014 212-727-1711

30 MINUTES. COLOR

NOMINEE FOR 1999 ACADEMY AWARD FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT

Reviewed by Diana Marston-Wood

Through its use of creative media, including ample use of propaganda art, Wang conveys his youthful idealism and loyalty without overtly discussing their inherent contradiction  with actual events.

This thirty-minute film presents a vividly artistic and highly personal view of China, especially during the period 1960 through 1989. Truly unique is the fascinating mix of graphics which the filmmaker, Shui-Bo Wang, utilizes to convey impressions of his life. Wang mixes cartoon animation with both black-and-white still photos and colorful propaganda pictures. He never uses video clips; instead, Wang himself manipulates still images to convey the movement he wishes. For instance, he shows a sketch of a reading youth and, while describing how much he, Wang, loved to read, scenes from the books move across the picture above the reading boy’s head. This image is quickly replaced by the drawing of a heap of books, gradually consumed by a voracious and increasingly red fire.

The AAS Secretariat is closed on Monday, July 4, 2022, in observance of the Fourth of July holiday.