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2012 / HD / 78 mins

Synopsis

A walk through the park like no other, this joyous and conceptual documentary takes the vivid reality of an urban park - Peoples Park in Chengdu, Sichuan – and, with pure cinema magic, transforms it into an innovative exploration of social space, public intimacy, amateur performance, the gaze and its return. Directors Libbie Cohn and J.P. Sniadecki use a unique and apposite method of filming: one continuous 75-minute long tracking shot with no cuts and no edits. In the vibrant, uncontrolled context of a crowded Chinese park, their work balances meticulous preparation and rigorous execution with spontaneity and uncertainty. Their camera, as it pans side to side and glides relentlessly forward, catches hundreds of urbanites out for fun, relaxation, socializing and freedom: eating, strolling, singing, practicing calligraphy, dancing, and watching each other and the filmmakers. People’s Park initially feels like unadorned observation, yet slowly gathers a kind of ecstatic, trance-like groove, building to a rapturous climax, as people, movement, music, image and sound dance together: this is as close to pure pleasure as cinema can provide. The result is something extraordinary: a documentary re-creation of reality, or rather a production of something super-real, that calls to mind the democratic details of the Song Dynasty scroll painting Qingming Shanghe Tu in its careful depiction of everyday life and material culture, while also activating our sympathetic gaze and ecstatic participation.

伴随着一次独一无二的公园漫步,这部令人愉快的又极具概念性的纪录片生动地描绘了四川成都人民公园的真实景象。又伴随着纯粹的电影魔力,这部影片将这次漫步变成了一次对社会空间、公共距离、业余表演、凝视与回归的创新探索。导演 Libbie Cohn 和 J.P. Sniadecki 运用了一种独一无二、恰到好处的电影手法:一个七十五分钟的一镜到底的长镜头。在这个生机勃勃、自由自在的中国公园里,导演们的摄影平衡了精细的准备和对自然和不确定性的严格维护。他们的摄影不断地移动和飞翔,捕捉到了成百的城市居民娱乐、放松、社交、自由的场景,例如吃饭、遛弯、唱歌、书法、跳舞,以及对导演以及其他人的观察与凝视。《人民公园》在开始的时候像是一次质朴的观察。但是随后它慢慢的汇集了一种喜悦,一种恍恍惚惚的游离,当人们、动作、音乐、映像以及一起跳舞的声音都汇集一起时,电影到达了一个令人着迷的高潮。这是一种近乎于纯粹的愉悦观影体验。最终的结果是超凡的:一部再创造现实的,又或者是对绝对现实的描绘的纪录片,激起了人们对于宋代《清明上河图》的联想。

Selected Screenings

Whitney Biennale

Shanghai Biennale

Shenzhen Biennale

Museum of Modern Art

Guggenheim Musuem

Museum of Natural History

New York Asia Society

Locarno Internatioanal Film Festival

New Directors/New Films Festival

Viennale

DocLisboa

RIDM

Riviera Maya International Film Festival

Beijing International Film Festival

Festival dei Popoli (winner: “Best Anthropological Film”)

Ann Arbor Film Festival (winner: “Best Cinematography”)