Unknown China

Three films, three journeys to discover the world's largest nation’s human universe: on one hand the story and the price China is still paying for the infamous one child policy, the largest demographic engineering project ever made; on the other hand the presence and use of ancient Chinese traditions in nowadays educational practices are brought in focus, both on a micro scale and on an institutional, nationwide scale.

  • Confucian Dream

    Chaoyan is a young mother with a steady job living in a giant city. Her life is comfortable, but she increasingly finds emptiness at home with her young son Chen, her husband Mei, and his mother. Chaoyan met Mei when he was a young man with big dreams. But now, with a utilitarian focus on money, he isn’t that way anymore. But Chaoyan discovers ancient teachings that her generation has forgotten: Confucianism. Could it help her family?

    Mijie Li • SUA • 2019 • 88′

  • Fetele-dragon

    Dragon Girls

    The story of three Chinese girls, training to become Kung Fu fighters, far away from their families at the Shaolin Tagou Kung Fu School, located next to the monastery that is the place of origin of Kung Fu. Three girls in a crowd of 27.000 children, under pressure to conform to the norms and structures. They are turned into fighting robots and yet, if you look behind the curtain, you see children with dreams and aspirations.

    Inigo Westmeier • Germany • 2012 • 90′

  • One Child Nation

    China’s One Child Policy, the extreme population control measure that made it illegal for couples to have more than one child, may have ended in 2015, but the process of dealing with the trauma of its brutal enforcement is only just beginning. The documentary explores the ripple effect of this devastating social experiment, uncovering one shocking human rights violation after another – from abandoned newborns to forced sterilizations and abortions.

    Nanfu Wang • USA • 2019 • 85′