Thursday, September 23, 2010

And stacked next to all those films about George Washington...


Chinese film on 1960 labor camps cheered in Venice

A powerful Chinese film on the plight of political prisoners condemned to forced labor camps in the late 1950s wooed critics in Venice on Monday, with some tipping it as a strong contender for the festival's top prize.

"The Ditch" tells the little-known story of some 3,000 people deported for "re-education" to labor camps on the edge of the Gobi desert, in western China, and struggling to survive extreme climate and acute food shortages.

Billed as right-wing enemies by the government for even mildly criticizing the Communist party or simply because of their background, many died of starvation, disease and exhaustion in the ditches that served as dormitories.

For a set of people that become giddy over the prospects of a "docu-drama" on Che' Guevara, we're at a loss to determine in what context this "cheering" was er, executed.

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