The Phoenix Network:
About  |  Advertise
Adult  |  Moonsigns  |  Band Guide  |  Blogs  |  In Pictures
Features  |  Reviews
Find a Movie
Movie List
Loading ...
Find Theaters and Movie Times
Search Movies

Review: 24 City

A complex and lucid cinematic poem
By PETER KEOUGH  |  August 13, 2009
3.5 3.5 Stars


Developers tear down a factory to built the massive residential and commercial complex of the title, tossing out those who had worked there for decades. A familiar scenario both here and in China, but Jia Zhang-ke has shaped it into a complex and lucid cinematic poem about identity, transience, and loss. The stories of six of the disenfranchised workers, as related by professional actors, intercut the often surreal images of the cavernous, greasy, Mao-era structure as it's being dismantled. In one such sequence, tiny figures carry off the enormous neon Chinese characters from the sign over the factory gate; they look like leafcutter ants razing a tree. And Jia matches his striking and resonant visuals with the sly reflexivity of his dramatized "interviews." A worker nicknamed "Little Flower" in the factory's heyday because she looked like the title character in the 1979 Zhang Zheng film is depicted by Joan Chen — who played Little Flower in the original movie.

Related: Review: Evangelion 1.0: You Are Not Alone, Review: Frozen, Flow, More more >
  Topics: Reviews , Business, Real Estate, Joan Chen,  More more >
  • Share:
  • Share this entry with Facebook
  • Share this entry with Digg
  • Share this entry with Delicious
  • RSS feed
  • Email this article to a friend
  • Print this article
HTML Prohibited
Add Comment

Share this entry with Delicious
  •   REVIEW: EDGE OF DARKNESS  |  February 05, 2010
    A new genre is emerging in which aging A-list actors play fathers off on a rampage to rescue their daughters or avenge their deaths.
  •   REVIEW: FROZEN  |  February 03, 2010
    A storm is coming, the girl has to pee, and then things get much worse.
  •   KAREN SCHMEER: 1970-2010  |  February 02, 2010
    Karen Schmeer, the brilliant local film editor whose work on Errol Morris's documentary The Fog of War helped win it the Best Documentary Oscar in 2004, died January 29 in a tragic accident, struck by a getaway car as she was crossing a street in Manhattan. She would have turned 40 on February 20.
  •   IS THERE 'HOPE' IN HOLLYWOOD?  |  January 29, 2010
    Buoyed by President Barack Obama's campaign slogan, many had hopes for change after his election.
  •   REVIEW: WAITING FOR ARMAGEDDON  |  January 27, 2010
    Much scarier than 2012 is this documentary about the death grip that fundamentalist religious groups have on American politics.

 See all articles by: PETER KEOUGH

RSS Feed of for the most popular articles
 Most Viewed   Most Emailed 

  |  Sign In  |  Register
Phoenix Media/Communications Group:
Copyright © 2010 The Phoenix Media/Communications Group