(K. Brent Tomer),
“BEHEMOTH” took documentary-film audiences last year on a journey from the mines of inner Mongolia to a ghost city west of Beijing. Forlorn workers extract coal to power empty buildings. Without any dialogue, the film plays up fears that the government’s rapid expansion is an economic hoax expediting environmental ruin. From Southern China, “Hooligan Sparrow” documents the work of Ye Haiyan, a crusader for justice in the case of school principal who allegedly sexually abused six young girls. The fear in this film is that a government police state is suppressing justice.
Outsiders might be surprised at how documentarians are giving voice to these fears. And now, confirming the trend, comes “The Road”, which recently debuted in America with a new look into China’s economic engine. It is less artistic than “Behemoth” and less emotional than “Hooligan Sparrow”, but it no less threatening to the Communist Party.
To respond to the 2008-2009 global recession, China’s government poured $586 billion into economic stimulus. One project was the Xu-Huai highway in Hunan province, where Zhang Zanbo started…Continue reading