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Postcolonialism, Diaspora, and Alternative HistoriesThe Cinema of Evans Chan$
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Tony Williams

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9789888208166

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888208166.001.0001

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Brecht in Hong Kong

Brecht in Hong Kong

Evans Chan’s The Life and Times of Wu Zhong Xian

(p.81) Chapter Seven Brecht in Hong Kong
Postcolonialism, Diaspora, and Alternative Histories

Gina Marchetti

Hong Kong University Press

Techniques associated with Bertolt Brecht surface in many of Evans Chan’s films. The Life and Times of Wu Zhongxian is perhaps the clearest and most self-conscious illustration of this interest. In this film, Chan documents a Brecht influenced performance by Hong Kong dramatist Mok Chiu-yu juxtaposed with found footage, fictionalized reenactments, intertitles, and voice-overs to comment deliberately and self-reflexively on the continuing importance of Brecht in Hong Kong film and theater. Among the footage is John Woo’s experimental film Deadknot as well as dramatizations of reminiscences of Wu Zhongxian’s girlfriend. These materials are not presented as unaltered “authentic” documents or as unquestioned representations of a particular point of view or a specific event. Instead they are treated in the same interrogative manner characterizing Chan’s other work.

Keywords:   Evans Chan, BertoltBrecht, Wu Zhongxian, John Woo, Mok Chiu-yu, Avant-Garde

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