Director: Jia Zhangke Run Time: 113 min. Release Year: 2002 Language: Chinese
Starring: Feng Qing, Qiong Wu, Wang Hongwei, Wei Wei Zhao, Zhao Tao
One of the first great films of the twenty-first century, Jia Zhangke’s third feature (and his first shot on digital) sets an arresting tale of disaffected youth against the backdrop of a changing China. Evoking the existential malaise of China’s so-called “birth control” generation—who came of age following the country’s one-child policy—UNKNOWN PLEASURES unfolds in a series of stunning, slow-burn long takes as it traces the relationship between an aimless teenage couple searching for meaning amid the detritus of Western pop culture.