FESTIVALS: * Sydney Film Festival * DOXA * Belfast * Cleveland * Thessaloniki * Boulder * Sundance World Documentary Competition * IDFA First Appearance Competition
AWARDS: * EIDF 2013 Unicef Award
Environment, Human Interest, Human Rights
Running time |
90' - 55'
When an earthquake struck the Chinese mountain city of Beichuan on May 12, 2008, it was completely destroyed. Twenty thousand people died, leaving their families devastated. Fallen City zooms in on the family lives of three survivors, who are marked by painful memories and deep sadness. Mr. Peng is a devoted father who lost his daughter in the rubble. The trauma that he and his wife are suffering stands in the way of rebuilding their life.
Divorcee Mrs. Li explains that she lives only for her paralyzed mother and for her job as a district chief. Fourteen-year-old Hong lost his father in the earthquake and has to struggle through high school, distanced from his less-than-loving mother. Both the inhabitants of Beichuan and the city itself are torn between life as it used to be and modernity. Peng and his wife are stopped by soldiers when, as part of a traditional ritual, they want to burn money where their daughter died, while Hong's mother is annoyed by the video games her son is playing. Meanwhile, several miles from where the rubble has piled up like a garbage dump, a new city is being built at breakneck speed - a city that is supposed to offer the survivors a better life.