A Lean Soul

CHU Hsien-Che

Taiwan〡2020〡Doc〡Color, B&W〡104 min〡Mandarin, Taiwanese
✧ 2021 Best Documentary, Best visual effects, Taipei Film Awards
✧ 2020 Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival

A LEAN SOUL examines the life and works of Taiwanese novelist Qi Dengsheng. The filmmakers were able to obtain in-depth interviews not only with Qi’s closest friends and relatives, but also with the notoriously camera-shy Qi himself. The film also vividly dramatizes many passages from Qi’s intensely autobiographical works of fiction. The result is an intimate and candid portrait of one of the most important and controversial Taiwanese writers of the last fifty years.

Director

CHU Hsien-Che
CHU Hsien-Che has worked as a director and writer for more than twenty years. In 2001, his film PICK OF THE LITTER: STRAY DOGS IN TAIWAN earned the “best documentary” award of the Golden Horse Festival. His dramatic film WHITE ANT received the FIPRESCI Prize at the 2016 Busan International Film Festival.

11.08 ㊁ 15:40〡台南新光影城 4 廳
11.12 ㊅ 10:30〡台南新光影城 4 廳〡 Q&A session with the Director
Buying Tickets

本片嘗試還原七等生的多重面貌,用影像書寫他的壓抑、自信、予盾和世俗。視角徘徊於現實與虛幻之中,以眾多角度的訪談毫不迴避地勾勒作家的生命史;用意象繚繞的真人演出與文本的內涵交互對應,視覺冷僻調度又很克制,這些間離特質都使影片多了一重魅力與意蘊。

The internal darkness and innocence of Qi Dengsheng’s fiction are on full display in his works, which read like an intimate and voyeuristic view of a person’s whole life, an experience that is both thrilling and healing. In reality, his raw outpouring of sentimentality often reminds me of a question raised in his novels: When stuck in a dilemma, are we able to recognize ourselves and choose to love ourselves? (even if it goes against society’s collective sense of morality.) Is God with us at that moment? After filming Qi Dengsheng for more than two years, when I realized that I, too, had this question, I suddenly felt a sense of bliss, glad that I still retained some power to fly away from the set course in the darkness.

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