OMCA Film | When the Bough Breaks, by Ji Dan: Oakland Screening

Saturday, March 23, 2013, 2 pm
Saturday, March 23, 2013 - 2:00pm

Please note: the post-film discussion with the artist Hung Liu previously scheduled for this date has been canceled due to a scheduling conflict.

See the noted documentary film When the Bough Breaks, by Chinese filmmaker Ji Dan in the James Moore Theater at OMCA and afterwards view the exhibition Summoning Ghosts: The Art of Hung Liu, on view at OMCA March 16 through April 30, 2013.

Included with Museum admission. Free to OMCA Members.

Film description from CAAMFest:

A young girl stands stubbornly in a frozen wasteland, gazing into the distance at brand-new buildings far beyond her reach. This opening shot underlines the theme of When the Bough Breaks, a persuasive, powerful documentary about a family living on the edges of Beijing.The family's two daughters, Xia and Ling, and their son Gang form the heart of the story; they share none of the riches of the nearby capital city, but share with one another a burden too heavy for their ages: how to find funding for their education and change their fate-with little help from their parents.

Their dominant, unreasonable father possesses neither the will nor the ability to support their education, while their mother merely dreams of some kind of miraculous outside intervention, whether from an Auntie or the lecherous Mr. Chen. Left on their own, the kids must fight the battle themselves, led by the strong-willed Xia. Xia and Ling are forced to drop out of school in order to afford to send Gang to college. Though the family remains intact after all the fights, the cuts are raw and difficult to heal.

Directed by one of China's most significant female filmmakers, Ji Dan, When the Bough Breaks is a raw, at times unblinking portrayal of the underclass of contemporary China.
—Meng Li

147 mins / Mandarin with English subtitles.

In partnership with CAAMFest (March 14-24, 2013), a presentation of the Center for Asian American Media.