Li Wen at East Lake

As with everything in life, the same goes for East Lake, a threatened lake near the expanding mega city of Wuhan. You can get worked up about it and get involved – or you can think, it won’t affect me. Fortunately there’s the intriguing new film by Li Luo, which brings to an end these doubts. East Lake (Dong Hu) is a scenic area in the city of Wuhan, threatened by new amusement parks, high-rises and even an airport. ‘East Lake is getting smaller and smaller, but it’s bigger and bigger in my memory,’ wrote a friend to the Canada-based Chinese filmmaker Li Luo as a result of the development. In a lucid way, the film investigates how the lake is linked to the people, leading to reflection on identity and survival in today’s China. The form is varied and free. Li uses documentary as well as fictional style elements, and often an ironic mixture of both. © iffr.com

Emperor Visits the Hell

A modern adaptation of the Ming Dynasty novel Journey to the West (aka Monkey) in which Emperor Li Shimin suffers a short death.