Kolkata, Nov 15 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS) The 17th Kolkata Film Festival is playing host to Taiwanese cinema this year.
Taiwanese cinema has an interesting and challenging history. It is part of the film revolution that has seen a paradigm shift in filmmaking destinations from Western cinema, mainly from Spain, Italy, France, countries who were pioneers in the art of filmmaking who offered the only challenge to mainstream Hollywood cinema.
This shift has brought into focus, the culture-specific cinema of South Asian countries like Taiwan, Thailand, Korea and Japan.
Akira Chen, one of the hot-shot, young Taiwanese directors who presented his film Everlasting Moments, says, “Over the ages, people from different provinces of China had migrated to the little island of Taiwan. The multi-lingual and multi-cultural interface as a consequence led to major conflicts that went on to influence the first era of Taiwanese filmmaking.”
Taiwanese cinema today represents a culturally important genre of filmmaking that is unique in terms of its influences from China, Hollywood and Japan.
Chen says, “Contemporary Taiwanese cinema truly depicts creative genius stripped of bureaucratic influences.” For example, his film I Can’t Live Without You’s story is based on real-life characters and incidents.
“The incident which inspired the film happened in 2003. More than six Taiwanese TV channels broadcast live coverage of the man threatening to jump off the pedestrian bridge with his daughter. It went on for twenty minutes.
Next day, though, it was all forgotten. There were no follow-up news items, no analyses of the social issues or of the particular difficulties faced by this man,” he sums up.
– Shoma A. Chatterji