Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires Festivales de Buenos Aires

About July

april 16

Alianza Francesa de Buenos Aires


Film information

Director ← [ + info ]

Wei Te-Sheng

Wei Te-Sheng’s career is strange. In 1999 he made his first film About July, a film about a teenager and his connection to the gangster world, among other things. Years later, in another decade, century, and millennium, Wei did his second film. This second one he actually made it to get the money for his third one, which would have been the second one if he would have had the money at the time. Anyway, the story that deserves to be told is about the one that actually became the second one, Cape No. 7, which became nothing less than the most popular film in the history of Taiwan, grossing more than ten times what it had cost and influencing the country so much that several lines of the script became common expressions in everyday life. Abroad, the film circulated through some other Asian countries, some European festivals (Asian cinema events, mostly) and its only American screening took place at the Hawaii Film Festival. The most popular films in countries “outside Hollywood” have had a hard time getting to other territories for quite some years now. In Argentina, for example, we don’t even know which the most popular films in Italy are, or the names of their biggest stars.

A box office hit that features pop songs, an outlandish band, comedy, and beautiful landscapes Cape No. 7 will now be screened at Bafici, a festival that also welcomes films that were massive successes in other places and are only known here by a handful of people (like the case of The Host, which was commercially distributed here and it was a flop).

With such a precedent, Wei was able to make his longed mega-project, the four-hour long Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale which was distributed in two parts in Asia and was cut down to two hours and a half for the foreign market version. It actually made it to the Official Competition in the Venice Film Festival in 2011, as well as the shortlist for foreign films nominated for an Oscar. With overwhelming film energy, at first Warriors of the Rainbow recalls Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto. Later we will see that Braveheart is also a pertinent reference for this tale of the historic rebellion of the Seediq tribe against Japanese domination. There is lots of violence, movement, production value, melodrama, unleashed epic, strong characters, and images of a surprising plasticity. Genres always change, and with only a few films, Wei’s ambitious cinema shows not only a great capacity for adaptation, but also a huge ability to connect with the audience. In Bafici he will also test his connection with the audiences in Buenos Aires, in the antipodes of Taiwan.

Javier Porta Fouz

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