"Balzac and the Little Chinese
Directed by Dai Si Jie
This 2003 Golden Globe nominee for Best Foreign Film
is based on the experience of director Dai Si Jie, who spent four years in a
re-education program instigated during Mao Zedong's "Cultural Revolution."
Two teenage boys, Ma (Ye Liu) and Luo (Kun Chen), are sent to live on the
remote mountain known as Phoenix in the Sky. The boys steal the "subversive"
novels of Honore de Balzac, Flaubert, Dostoevsky, and Gogol, and read them
to the granddaughter of the local tailor (Xun Zhou). While reading, both
boys fall in love with the girl, and, through Balzac, discover awakening
desire, passion, impulsive action, love - all the subjects that had, until
then, been hidden. Mandarin with English subtitles.