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Beijing Taxi
Introduced by Director Miao Wang
with Discussion to Follow Film
Free from Confucius Institute Film & Lecture Series 2011
Coming to Wang Center, Nov. 30th at 7 pm

New York Magazine "Critics Pick"... "mesmerizing"
NY Times... "poignant... seamless..."
Variety... "Engrossing... Imagistic... Revealing"

"BEIJING TAXI is a feature-length documentary that vividly portrays the ancient capital of China undergoing a profound transformation. The intimate lives of three taxi drivers are seen through a humanistic lens as they navigate a quickly morphing city, confronting modern issues and changing values. The three protagonists radiate a warm sense of humanity despite the struggles that each faces in adapting to new realities of life in the modern city. With stunning imagery of Beijing and a contemporary score rich in atmosphere, BEIJING TAXI communicates a visceral sense of the common citizens' persistent attempts to grasp the elusive. The 2008 Summer Olympic Games serve as the backdrop for BEIJING TAXI's story, a coming out party for a rising nation and a metaphor for Chinese society and its struggles to reconcile enormous contradictions while adjusting to a new capitalist system that can seem foreign to some in the Communist-ruled and educated society..."
                                                                    - Miao Wang, Director

Watch the trailer:

"Set against the backdrop of China’s capital, this visually stunning documentary follows the lives of three local cab drivers as the city prepares for the 2008 Summer Olympics. In the midst of massive construction projects that transform the city’s landscape, the drivers each represent a different generation in a metropolis rushing towards modernization. Bai Jiwen, a former member of the Red Guard with a 4th grade education looks forward to retirement; Zhou Yi enjoys getting away from the streets of Beijing to fish with his father and friends; and Wei Caixia is a mother who has high hopes for her young daughter in the new economy. All are fully aware that the social and economic upheaval taking place around them has both very personal along with broad global implications.

The cinematography, original music score and editing all combine perfectly to showcase the frenetic energy, movement, and buoyancy of contemporary Beijing."
                                                                  Reviewer: Linda Frederiksen
                                                                  Washington State University

Beijing Taxi
Miao Wang / 2010 / USA / 78 minutes / Mandarin with English Subtitles

Miao Wang is based in NY, splitting  her time between NYC and her hometown of Beijing. Born in Beijing just after the Cultural Revolution, she grew up  with the last remnants of a pre-modernized Communist China. She immigrated to the US  in 1990.

Her first documentary, Yellow Ox Mountain, was shown on WNET 13. She has edited a feature-length PBS documentary and National Geographic programs.

Beijing Taxi, her first feature, premiered at SXSW 2010, took Best Documentary at Sidewalk Film Festival 2010, and Best Director at Duke City Docfest 2010. It received a grant from Sundance Documentary Fund, the Jerome Foundation and NYSCA.


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