Asian cities, it is often noted by urban planners and science fiction writers alike, are the metropolises of the future. They are also, as demonstrated by this outstanding four-weekend series, cities of sadness—sites of swooning heartbreak (Wong Kar-wai), deranging alienation (Tsai Ming-liang), and numbing stasis (Jia Zhangke). More than anyone else's, Jia's tender, rigorous films convey the sensation of being swept up—and left behind—by Asia's so-called economic miracle. Mapping the effects of post-Mao convulsions on powerless individuals, they provide street-level chronicles of mainland China's deepening... More >>>