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Duilian / Orlando

8 Apr (Sat) 7:20pm

Duilian (2016)
26 min, English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Tagalog, and Bahasa Indonesia with Chinese subtitles, Digital, Hong Kong/USA

Duilian combines magical realism, documentary, and wushu martial arts choreography to present a sumptuous story of historical fiction set in present-day Hong Kong. Staging a speculative love story between the Chinese revolutionary poet Qiu Jin (1875–1907, played by gender-fluid performance artist boychild), and the poet’s calligrapher friend Wu Zhiying (1868–1934, played by Wu Tsang), the film constructs new queer Asian histories by ‘reading between the lines’ of the past. Duilian decodes and deliberately mistranslates official narratives about Qiu Jin to question the role that language and storytelling play in immortalising, mythologising, and erasing certain histories. 

Wu Tsang (American, b.1982) is a Los Angeles-based video artist. She discovered Qiu Jin’s story when she visited China for the first time in 2005. Tsang’s cross-cultural heritage and transgender identity have spurred her artistic explorations of race, culture, history, and community. 
Orlando (1992)
93 min, English, Digital, France/United Kingdom/Italy/Netherlands/Russia

Sexy, witty, and provocative, Sally Potter’s cinematic adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s 1928 novel tells of a naive aristocrat’s romp through 400 years of English history, first as a man, then as a woman. Tilda Swinton stars as Orlando, the boyish heir to a noble title, who is gifted wealth and lands by Queen Elizabeth I (Quentin Crisp) on the condition that he does not age. When his heart is later broken by a Russian princess, he curses all women only to find he has become one.

Sally Potter (British, b.1949) left school at sixteen to become an experimental film director. She was a member of the London Film-Makers’ Co-op and also trained as a dancer and choreographer at the London School for Contemporary Dance. In 2012, she was awarded an OBE for her services to film.

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