Photo by Bruno Zhu
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That flawless world is dead, and has left no bones. Nothing but burnt stumps, drifting surfaces, formless fight, and the blue water of a tiny well, guarded by my silent Friend.

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May the revolution end soon and may the victory return to the people.

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Food can bring satiation, joy, and the gratification of generosity and hospitality, but when the many layers of the surface are peeled away, we are forced to reflect on the “common sense” of ordinary life, and dig out the roots of the pain that others or we collectively experience. 

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Jonnie To’s films, on the other hand, address something that reaches deeper than perceptible phenomena—the tension between the aforementioned ideologies and certain preconceived beliefs. Perhaps such a tension is the true core of the “Hong Kong perspective”—it encompasses an alternative understanding of fate and acknowledgement of esoteric knowledge, and even praises of the spirit of Xia.

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It is late April in Shanghai; any “normalcy” has spiraled into abstraction, owing to its protracted absence from life’s routines. My daily existence consists of humdrum cycles of hunger, sleep, and em…

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When we see the history of film through the figure of the bianshi, the influence of vernacular drama (kabuki, glove puppetry, and pansori) is always immanent, that the birth of film is not simply a rupture with the legacy of the theater. In this vein, we can use Chen Chieh-jen’s idea of yaoyan film to ex-scribe a birthdate for yaoyan-style film. The year is 1926, in the moment in which Taiwan’s bianshi started to create countless anti-colonial film memories for audiences.

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When the calibrated verbal expressions still assume their roles as the predominant majority to reinforce themselves, how shall we interpret the sense of touching and its absence?

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There are convoluted, bewildering little things everywhere. We are situated in different places, but perhaps can try to chart them at the same time.

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