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Posts Tagged ‘luc schaedler’

A Long Way Home · 2018

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Documentary

A Long Way Home

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Luc Schaedler | go between films
CH 2018 | 73 | EN, DE, FR, Chin

The documentary « A Long Way Home» centers around five of the most significant representatives of contemporary Chinese counterculture: the visual artists the Gao Brothers, the choreographer and dancer Wen Hui, the animation artist Pi San and the poet Ye Fu.

With bravery and subversive wit, they each shed light on the social problems in their country from their unique perspective. What they share is a struggle to come to terms with their respective pasts, all scarred by violence and oppression. Their vision is of a democratic, supportive and humane civil society.

A Long Way Home takes us on a fascinating journey into both the grim days of recent Chinese history and the dazzling cultural scene in present-day China. In doing so, the film poses universal questions that ultimately concern us all: which values determine our cultural identity and in what kind of world do we want to live? A Long Way Home is an entertaining and moving plea for human solidarity.

«My exploration of China and Chinese culture goes back more than 25 years now. Since the brutal suppression of the Democracy Movement in 1989, I’ve traveled through China several times. I have followed its economic development and subsequent political and social upheaval with both amazement and bewilderment: What do external events, ruptures and changes trigger in people, and how does it impact their daily lives?»
Luc Schaedler

INTERVIEW with Luc Schaedler (04:30)
→ ALWH: Statement director
→ ALWH: The protagonists
→ ALWH: Background
→ ALWH: Downloads
(photos & presskit)

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Video On Demand

A Long Way Home · 2018 - go between films - video on demand

A Long Way Home (2018)
en, de, fr

 

→ click here  

 

→ Available in Switzerland

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For international sales
of «A Long Way Home» → click here

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FESTIVALS

– Solothurner Filmtage (Switzerland)
Nomination Prix de Soleure
Nomination für Swiss Film Award
– Montréal, Festival des films du monde (Canada)
– Dharamshala Intl. Filmfestival (India)
– Cracking the Frame (Netherlands)
– International Filmfestival Innsbruck (Austria)
– Fünf Seen Filmfestival, Starnberg (Deutschland)
– EPOS Intl. Art Filmfestival (2020), Tel Aviv (Israel)

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LINKS

→ Wen Hui performing «Red Detachment of Women» (Clip)
→ Nomination for Swiss Film Award 2018
→ Swiss Films Promotion Agency
→ imdb.com – A Long Way Home
→ Facebook – A Long Way Home

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PLAYLIST (10 Clips):

Gao Brothers, Wen Hui, Pi San, Ye Fu, original Kuang Kuang Clip etc.

A Long Way Home · 2018 - go between films - a-long-way-home-2018

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A Long Way Home 2018 - Vimeo on Demand - go between films       A Long Way Home 2018 - YouTube - go between films

 

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Watermarks · 2013

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Documentary

Watermarks

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Luc Schaedler | go between films gmbh
CH 2013 | 80 | EN, DE, FR, Chin

Based on three different places, the documentary portrays the infractions to which people living in modern day China are subjected due to rapid developments: in the deceptively idyllic Jiuxiancun in the rainy south; in the apocalyptic coal mining site of Minqin and Wusutu in the parched north; and in Chongqing, the megacity on the Yangtze River.

The protagonists give their moving accounts of an unresolved past, an uncertain present and their tentative steps into the future. The film thus paints a complex image of the mental state of the people in this complicated country. “Watermarks” is a subjective snapshot in time that takes a poetic look at the changing everyday life in China.

«Since the crushing of the democracy movement in 1989, I have followed the upheaval in China with equal parts amazement and irritation: the country looks like a huge construction site and seems to be involved in a precipitous search for itself. In this unstable present the protagonists are taking tentative but courageous steps into the future.»
Luc Schaedler

→ WaMa: Statement director
→ WaMa: Locations China
→ WaMa: Downloads (photos & presskit)

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Video On Demand

Watermarks · 2013 - go between films - video on demand

Watermarks (2013)
en, de, fr

 

→ click here  

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→ FESTIVALS (selection):

– Locarno, Semaine de la critique (Competition)
– Warszawa, Planete + Doc (Competition)
– Istanbul, TRT Awards (Best Documentary)
– Dublin, Silk Road Film Festival (Best Documentary)
– München DOK.fest competition
– San Francisco, Golden Gate Awards
– Solothurner Filmtage official selection

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LINKS:

→ The Funeral (Clip)
→ Swiss Films Promotion Agency
→ imdb.com – Watermarks
→ Facebook – Watermarks

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PLAYLIST (10 Clips):

Unpublished scenes from Watermarks · 2013

    Watermarks · 2013 - luc schaedler - watermarks-2013

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    Angry Monk · 2005

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    Documentary

    Angry Monk

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    Luc Schaedler | go between films
    CH 2005 | 97 | EN, DE, FR, Tib

    Tibet — the mystical roof of the world, peopled with enlightened monks? Only one of them wouldn’t toe the line: Gendun Choephel, the errant monk who left the monastic life in 1934 in search of a new challenge. A free spirit and multifaceted individual, he was far ahead of his time and has since become a seminal figure, a symbol of hope for a free Tibet. A rebel and voluble critic of the establishment, Gendun Choephel kindled the anger of the Tibetan authorities.

    The cinematic journey through time portrays the life of this unorthodox monk, revealing a face of old Tibet that goes against popular clichés. The film makes an abundance of unique and rare historical footage available to the general public for the first time.

    But it does not dwell on the past; rather it skilfully oscillates between tradition and modernity. Archival images of ancient caravans and monasteries give way to scenes of discos and multi-lane highways in Lhasa, where pilgrims pros- trate themselves as they circle the holy temple. ANGRY MONK offers a fascinating insight into a country whose eventful past is refracted in the multiplicity and contradictions of everyday life.

    Ultimately, the documentary «Angry Monk» also tells the story of a man who left home to search for something that could have liberated traditional Tibet from its rigidity. An outsider who was always open to new things, he eventually became a stranger in his homeland and homeless in foreign lands — a wanderer between worlds.

    (The documentary «Angry Monk» was also the main part of my Ph.D. in Visual Anthropology at the University of Zurich)

    → Ph.D.: ANGRY MONK: Literary, Historical, and Oral Sources for a Documentary Film (2007)

    → Gendun Choephel Conference at the Latse Library, New York

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    → AM: Statement director
    → AM: Interview director
    → AM: Bio of Gendun Choephel
    → AM: Texts of Gendun Choephel
    → AM: Downloads
    (photos & presskit)

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    Video On Demand

    Angry Monk (2005) link to Vimeo On Demand

    Angry Monk (2005)
    en, de, fr

     

    → click here  

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    PLAYLIST (9 Clips):

    Unpublished scenes from Angry Monk · 2005

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    → FESTIVALS (selection)

      – Sundance, Nomination Grand Jury Award
      – Busan (Competition)
      – Vancouver (Competition)
      – Montréal, Festival Nouveau Cinema (Competition)
      – München DOK.fest (Competition)
      – Melbourne (Competition)
      – Auckland (Competition)
      – Solothurner Filmtage official selection

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      LINKS:

      → Film Review – San Francisco Chronicle
      → Film Review – Indiewire
      → Film Review – Phayul
      → More on Gendun Choephel
      → Swiss Films Promotion Agency
      → imdb.com – Angry Monk

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      Poster of Angry Monk (2005) link to Vimeo On Demand

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      Made in Hong Kong · 1997

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      Documentary

      Made in Hong Kong

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      Luc Schaedler | go between films
      CH 1997 | 75 | 4:3 | EN, DE, FR

      The documentary allows glimpses on a Hong Kong shortly before the handover to China in 1997. But rather than attempting to paint the portrait of a «city in panic», it takes an in-depth look based on interviews with a broad spectrum of inhabitants.

      These include Peter – a British civil servant in the former colony, Nicole – a South African journalist, Eric Lye – a Chinese architect, Guo – a Chinese musician, Afzal – a Pakistani actor and Mohan – an Indian businessman. Their stories reveal the different stages of migration to this Asian metropolis, and are blended with images that capture Hong Kong’s many contrasting architectural faces.

      There are poetic moments, when the camera lingers in the labyrinthine passages of the legendary Chungking Mansions. Other essayistic images explore the multi-layered daily life and give the viewer the feeling of what it must be like to live in such a vast city, seen through the eyes of illegal immigrants, typical HK TV ads and other images.

      The restrictions of physical space, the architectural chaos, its celebrated booming economy, its untarnished attraction to immigrants, and the political and social uncertainties that stretch beyond 1997, all these are revealed in this very personal interpretation of Hong Kong today.

      (The documentary «Made in Hong Kong» was also the main part of my Master Thesis in Visual Anthropology at the University of Zurich)

      → Master: Arbeitsbericht zur Entstehung von «Made in Hong Kong» (German only)

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      Video On Demand

      Made in Hong Kong · 1997 - go between films - made-in-hong-kong-1997

      Made in Hong Kong (1997)
      en, de, fr

       

      → click here 

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      → FESTIVALS (selection)

      – Dok Leipzig (competition)
      – Busan Intl. Filmfestival (Wide Angle competition)
      – Vancouver International Filmfestival (competition)
      – Solothurner Filmtage 
      official selection

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      LINKS:

      → Swiss Films – Made in Hong Kong – 1997
      → imdb.com – Made in Hong Kong
      → Facebook – go between films

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      PLAYLIST (5 Clips):

      Unpublished scenes from Made in Hong Kong · 1997

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      Made in Hong Kong · 1997 - go between films - made-in-hong-kong-1997

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      Made in Hong Kong · 1997 - go between films - made-in-hong-kong-1997       Made in Hong Kong · 1997 - go between films - made-in-hong-kong-1997

       

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      Video On Demand

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      Streaming

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      Links to the Video On Demand Website where the documentaries and videos of «go between films» can be bought or rented in different language versions.

      · Watermarks (2013)
      · Angry Monk (2005)
      · Made in Hong Kong (1997)
      → Available worldwide

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      · A Long Way Home (2018)
      → Available in Switzerland

      Rent from USD 5 | CHF 5 | € 4.50
      Buy from USD 12 | CHF 12 | € 11
      → Credit Card or PayPal

      video-on-demand - a long way home 2018 - video on demand

      A Long Way Home (2018)
      en, de, fr

       

      → click here  

       

       

      → Available in Switzerland

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      → For international sales
      of «A Long Way Home»:

      DER web logo for light background

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      Available Worldwide ↓

      video-on-demand - watermarks 2013 - video on demand

       

      Watermarks (2013)
      en, de, fr

       

      → click here  

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      video-on-demand - angry monk 2005 - video on demand

       

      Angry Monk (2005)
      en, de, fr

       

      → click here  

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      video-on-demand - made in hong kong 1997 - video on demand

       

      Made in Hong Kong (1997)
      en, de, fr

       

      → click here 

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      dvd-selection - go between films

       

      → click here 

       

       

      The documentaries of «go between films» (Luc Schaedler) can also be bought as DVD in different language versions.

      Each DVD: USD 25 + USD 5 (shipping)
      Total: USD 30 | CHF 30 | € 25
      • Credit Card or PayPal needed

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      DVDs – Selection

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      DVDs

      go between films

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      A selection of documentaries and videos of «go between films» can be bought as DVDs in different language versions (all territories):

      · Watermarks (2013)
      · Angry Monk (2005)
      · Made in Hong Kong (1997)
      → Available worldwide

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      · A Long Way Home (2018)
      → Available in Switzerland

      Each DVD: USD 25 + USD 5 (shipping)
      Total: USD 30 (appr. € 25 | CHF 30)
      → Credit Card or PayPal needed

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      DVDs - Selection - a long way home - go between films - dvds-selection

      A Long Way Home (2018)


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      English

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      German

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      French

      → Available in Switzerland

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      → For international sales of «A Long Way Home»

      DVD Selection - go between films - DVD-Selection

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      Available Worldwide ↓

      DVDs - Selection - watermarks - go between films - dvds-selection

      Watermarks (2013)

      en, de, fr, chin
      60 mins. Bonus

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      DVDs - Selection - angry monk - go between films - dvds-selection

      Angry Monk (2005)

      en, de, fr, tib
      60 mins. Bonus


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      DVDs - Selection - made in hong kong - go between films - dvds-selection

      Made in Hong Kong (1997)


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      English

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      German

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      French

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      Video On Demand

      Link to the Vimeo On Demand Page of «go between films» where the documentaries and videos can be bought and rented in different language versions:

      Rent from USD 5 (approx. CHF 5 | € 5)
      Buy from USD 12 (approx. CHF 12 | € 12)
      • Credit Card or PayPal

      DVDs - Selection - vimeo - go between films - dvds-selection

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      go between films

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      Film Production

      go-be•tween | gō biˈtwēn |
      to mediate, to intervene

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      go between films

      A Swiss film production company, engaged in making documentaries for cinematic and TV release. The company’s topics have an historical, social and political background with a strong focus on cross-cultural dialogue. It aims to produce both artistically and intellectually challenging films.

      Luc Schaedler of «go between films» also defines himself at the interface of film and science. In addition to mentoring students in documentary filmmaking, he is engaged in research projects in the field of visual anthropology.

      go between films was founded by Luc Schaedler in 2009. In 2010 he was joined by scriptwriter and script consultant Josy Meier.

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      FILMOGRAPHY

      2020 • LOBA LOBA
      In development | release: Winter 2021
      Producer

      Director: Anka Schmid
      Music: Corin Curschellas
      Short Documentary, 5 mins.

      2020 • TRACES OF HOPE
      In development | project start: Fall 2020

      Producer, writer, director
      Documentary, 75 mins.

      2018 • A LONG WAY HOME
      Producer, writer, director, camera
      Documentary, 75 mins.
      Nomination for Swiss Film Award 2018

      2013 • WATERMARKS
      Producer, writer, director, camera
      Documentary, 80 mins.
      Invitation to Semaine de la critique (Locarno)

      2005 • ANGRY MONK
      Producer, writer, director
      Documentary, 97 mins.
      Invitation to Sundance (competition), nomination for the “Grand Jury Prize”.

      1997 • MADE IN HONG KONG
      Producer, writer, director, camera
      Documentary, 75 mins.
      Invitation to Leipzig (competition), Study Award 1997 (BAK)

      2011 · NAGA IDENTITIES (draft)
      Director, Camera

      Ethno-Documentary, 60 mins.

      2007 · BURIAL RITES
      Producer

      TV-Documentary, Sternstunde, 30 mins.
      Directors: Mehdi Sahebi, Aya Domenig

      go between films - loba-loba - go-between-films

      Film Still of LOBA LOBA, 2020

       

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      LINKS:

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      go between films – contact

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      go between films - company - go-between-films       go between films - company - go-between-films

       

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      Luc Schaedler

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      Filmmaker &
      Producer

      Short Biography

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      Luc Schaedler | *1963 in Zurich, Switzerland
      – Independent Swiss filmmaker and producer
      – Founder of the film production company «go between films»
      – Director and producer of «A Long Way Home» (2018); «Watermarks» (2013); «Angry Monk» (2005) and «Made in Hong Kong» (1997)
      – Invitations to international film festivals (selection): Sundance; Busan; Leipzig; Montreal; Locarno; Munich; Tel Aviv

      → INTERVIEW with Luc Schaedler about his films (04:30)

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      CURRICULUM
      – 1985-2002 collaboration as program coordinator, film projectionist and barkeeper in the Off-Cinema Xenix in Zurich
      – 1988-92 travelled and worked in Asia | Barkeeper in Hong Kong and Tokyo
      – 1994-97 studied Visual Anthropology at the University of Zurich
      – Graduated with two documentary features: «Made in Hong Kong» (Master thesis, 1998) and «Angry Monk» (Ph.D. thesis, 2005)
      – 1998-2001 collaboration in setting up the children’s film club «Magic Lantern» in Zurich
      – Since 2001 various teaching positions in Visual Anthropology and documentary filmmaking at the Universities in Zurich, Bern and Fribourg
      – From 2006-08 head of the department of Visual Anthropology at the Anthropological Museum of Zurich University.

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      → FILMOGRAPHY of Luc Schaedler

      → Luc Schaedler’s thoughts on films about Tibet
      (German only)

      → imdb.com – luc-schaedler
      → Facebook – go between films

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      → go between films – contact

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      Luc Schaedler - go between films - luc-schaedler       Luc Schaedler - go between films - luc-schaedler

       

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      Luc Schaedler - go between films - luc-schaedler

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      Address

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      contact

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      go between films gmbh
      luc schaedler
      Tellstrasse 3
      8004 Zurich
      Switzerland

      EMAIL (→ Luc Schaedler)

      Streetmap (→ office)

      Contact – Address → from the universe to «Tellstrasse 3, Zurich»

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      address - luc schaedler - go-between-films-address

      Luc Schaedler © Nomination Swiss Film Award (2018)

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      address - luc schaedler - go-between-films-address       address - luc schaedler - go-between-films-address

       

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      Naga Identities · 2009

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      Ethno documentary

      Naga Identities

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      Camera, director: Luc Schaedler
      Production: go between films
      CH 2009 | 60 | Ethno documentary

      The village of Zanghkam in the Nagaland region of the Northeastern frontier in India certainly has a great potential for a long documentary film. But not as a remote mountain village untouched by civilisation with an intact indigenous culture. Rather the opposite: Zanghkam is a tragic example of being suspended between a lost tradition, a confusing and sad present and an unpromising future. The documentary Naga Identities tries to grasp this dilemma and make it comprehensible. Work in progress.

      «The twelve hours of footage were shot in March 2009 as part of a large research project on Nagaculture in India’s Northeastern border regions. Other products of the same research were the exhibtion “Naga: Ornaments and Ashes”, as well as the publication “Naga Identities: Changing Local Cultures in the Northeast of India”. It contains a collection of articles by various authors spanning an enlightening ark from the warring past, to an equally problematic present, to a very uncertain future.»
      Luc Schaedler

      A traditional headhunter song from Nagaland · 2009

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      Naga Identities 2009 - Vimeo on Demand - go between films       Naga Identities 2009 - YouTube - go between films

       

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      Burial Rites · 2007

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      TV Documentary

      Burial Rites

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      CH 2007 | 32 | TV documentary
      Writers & directors:
      Mehdi Sahebi, Aya Domenig
      Camera: Mehdi Sahebi 
      Editing:
      Aya Domenig
      Production:
      go between films | Luc Schaedler
      SRF Sternstunden

      Burial rites in change (German only): Are cemeteries outdated? Are new burial rites needed? Certainly the demand for rectangular graves in straight lines is declining. To slowly decompose in the ground has a growing negative connotation. More and more people seem to ask for communal graves or wish their ashes to be scattered in special places.

      The city of Zurich had these tendencies investigated in a scientific study and made the results accessible in a touching TV documentary film. With surprising openness both young and old people discuss their attitude towards dying and how they would want to be buried – and thus develop new burial rites.

      «On the level of grave forms, a strong tendency towards community graves can be observed. Rational, aesthetic and ideological considerations play a role in the individual decision for a community grave. Changing family structures and the increasing mobility of society have meant that family members often live far apart. This makes grave visits difficult in many cases.

      In this context, the community graves offers a simpler and less individual solution than a traditional row grave: the relatives can visit the community grave, but do not have to, and they always know that the buried family member is not alone».
      Aya Domenig (Director)

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      Burial Rites – Trailer (German only)

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      Burial Rites 2007 - go between films - burial-rites-2007       Burial Rites 2007 - go between films - burial-rites-2007

       

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      ALWH – Statement Director

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      Under «materials» you can find documents that provide additional information to the films of «go between films»

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      A Long Way Home

      Statement Director –
      Luc Schaedler

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      «My exploration of China and Chinese culture goes back more than 25 years now. Since the brutal suppression of the Democracy Movement in 1989, I’ve traveled through China several times. I have followed its economic development and subsequent political and social upheaval with both amazement and bewilderment.»

      «The deeper I delved into the country the more I learned about its grim history, the effects of which can still be felt in China today. Along the way one question has arisen time and time again: What do external events, ruptures and changes trigger in people, and how does it impact their daily lives?»

      «China also always inspired me to think about my own world. Taking a close look at another culture can cause you to see your own in a new light. This was a view also held by French ethnologist and philosopher Claude Lévi-Strauss who felt both encounters and confrontations with a foreign culture give us an opportunity, or stronger yet, a responsibility to look at and question one’s own society.»

      «In «A Long Way Home»  I ask myself from the perspective of a Swiss filmmaker, where the protagonists find the courage to expose themselves. How would I behave in their situation? How are we each shaped by our past? And finally: How is it possible that the essence of many of the existential problems they are confronted with seem surprisingly familiar to me, despite our vast cultural differences?»
      Statement director – Luc Schaedler

      Interview with Luc Schaedler in Dharamshala, India

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      Statement Director - luc schaedler - Statement-Director

      © go between films – Luc Schaedler filming the Gao Brothers in their home in Beijing, 2016

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      Filmtalk with Luc Schaedler in «Landbote» (by Irene Genhart)

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      Statement Director - Vimeo on Demand - Luc Schaedler - Statement-Director       ALWH-Statement-Director - YouTube - go between films

       

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      ALWH – Protagonists

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      A Long Way Home

      Protagonists

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      In A Long Way Home (alwh), the connecting element and main theme of the artistic works of  the protagonists Wen Hui, Pi San, Ye Fu and the Gao Brothers is a demand for the reconstruction of humanity throughout Chinese society. Looking back at their personal family histories, and thus recent Chinese history, takes on greater significance within the backdrop of their unease toward present-day Chinese society. Actively remembering is an important part of their work as they try to fathom the roots of present-day problems. Like researchers, they explore the possibilities of collective healing in their work. Luc Schaedler

       

      WEN HUI – choreographer | dancer

      In China, Wen Hui is considered the mother of modern dance. For years she has explored the topic of memory. In her current piece «Red», based on the propagandist ballet of the same name from the Cultural Revolution (1966-76), she processes the physical impact of this traumatic era.
      ALWH - Protagonists - go between films - ALWH-Protagonists

       

      PI SAN – animation artist

      Pi San is known to millions in China for his subversive animated film series, which have caused a sensation on the Internet. Through his mischievous cartoon character «Kuang Kuang» he exposes the injustices and absurdities of everyday life in China. In doing so he must constantly gauge how far he can go with his criticism.
      ALWH - Protagonists - go between films - ALWH-Protagonists

       

      YE FU – writer | poet

      The former police officer, who resigned in 1989 in protest against the suppression of the Democracy Movement, has made a name for himself in recent years with his autobiographical essays and blog articles which loudly demand political change.
      ALWH - Protagonists - go between films - ALWH-Protagonists

       

      GAO BROTHERS – visual artists | painters

      Gao Zhen and Gao Qiang, known internationally as the Gao Brothers, have been around since the birth of the modern Chinese art scene in 1985. They belong to the group of critical avant-garde artists whose work reflects the complexity of recent Chinese history and the «human condition» in a globalised world.
      ALWH - Protagonists - go between films - ALWH-Protagonists

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      ALWH – Background

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      A Long Way Home

      Historical Background

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      The struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting.
      Milan Kundera

      The Heart of Darkness

      The historical background of A Long Way Home is made up of two defining phases in recent Chinese history: the Democracy Movement of 1989 and the Cultural Revolution of 1966-1976. Beginning with present-day China, «A Long Way Home» moves deeper into the «heart of darkness» of Chinese history. The focus is on how people handle historical and biographical ruptures and how they process traumatic experiences.

      Cultural Revolution

      During the Cultural Revolution (1966-76), systematic violence was employed to eliminate everything private and to destroy social relationships. Mao Zedong and the Party relied on betrayal, public humiliation, self-incrimination, and re-education in everyday life. Mistrust and deep insecurity continue to shape relationships among people in China today.

      ALWH-Background - a long way home - ALWH - Background

      Top Party officials are denounced during rally in Red Guard Square, Harbin 1966

      Tiananmen, 1989

      In the film, the Democracy Movement of 1989 stands in direct opposition to the Cultural Revolution. What began as a student protest in Beijing soon grew into a sweeping movement uniting people of diverse social backgrounds. The first spontaneous mass movement outside party structures, it showed initial signs of a possible civil society that would not be able to germinate until after Mao’s death.

      ALWH-Background - Tiananmen Tankman 1989 - ALWH - Background

      © Gao Brothers, Beijing: The Tankman, 1989 

      Outlook

      The violent suppression by the People’s Army was a clear sign from the regime that the protest was not welcome and that public criticism of the Party would not be tolerated – a condition that continues to this day.

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      ALWH – Downloads

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      A Long Way Home

      Downloads

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      ↓ Presskit (english)
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      ↓ Presseheft (deutsch)

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      Gao Brothers – visual artists

       

      Pi San interview

      Pi San – animation artist

      ALWH-Downloads

      Wen Hui – dancer

      Ye Fu writer

      Ye Fu – writer

      ALWH-Downloads

      Gao Zhen – cooks

      Gao Zhen interview

      Gao Zhen – interview

      ALWH-Downloads

      Gao Zhen

      Gao Brothers Hitler

      Gao Brothers – Hitler

      ALWH-Downloads

      Pi San – models

      Wen Hui watching

      Wen Hui

      ALWH-Downloads

      Wen Hui – screen

      Wen Hui interview

      Wen Hui – interview

      Ye Fu lake

      Ye Fu – lakeside

      ALWH-Downloads

      Ye Fu – interview

       

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      ↓ ARTIKEL: Ethik im Dokumentarfilm (deutsch)
      Kaleo La Belle (Fell in Love with a Girl) und Luc Schaedler (A Long Way Home) discuss the question of ethics and responsability in documentary filmmaking with Till Brockmann.

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      WaMa – Statements Director

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      Watermarks

      Some thoughts

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      «Since the crushing of the democracy movement in 1989, I have followed the upheaval in China with equal parts amazement and irritation: the country looks like a huge construction site and seems to be involved in a precipitous search for itself. In this unstable present the protagonists are taking tentative but courageous steps into the future.»
      Luc Schaedler


      Statements to the film

      During the research for «Watermarks» and the subsequent filming in China I kept returning to a topic that had preoccupied me in my earlier films: namely, how people respond to external events, ruptures and life changes, and what this means to them in their daily lives. I took this question to heart in my new film and continued my search for answers. After Made in Hong Kong (1997) and Angry Monk (2005), the current film Watermarks · 2013 also marks the end of my Asian Trilogy.

      My relationship to China

      My relationship with China began over 20 years ago. Since the crushing of the democracy movement in 1989, I have travelled repeatedly through China. I have followed China’s economic development and the associated political and social upheavals with equal parts amazement and irritation.

      The social changes triggered by fast-paced economic development unsettled the people. They registered the growing pollution of the environment and water with concern. Entire landscapes as well as a part of their own family history and the cultural history of China were punctiliously ‘flooded’ by progress. My love-hate relationship with China is reflected in the ambivalence of many Chinese, who are simultaneously proud of and disconcerted by developments in their country. These are the contradictory feelings that I have attempted to capture in my film.

      The collaboration with Markus Schiesser

      In the project Markus Schiesser was responsible for the interviews with the protagonists as well as sound. To complete the research (2009/2010) and filming (2011), we travelled together for months through China and shared in the everyday lives of the protagonists. Markus and I made a good team. His relationship to the people grew out of his quiet ease and the fact that he speaks fluent Chinese. This brought him a great deal of respect. He was simultaneously an insider and an outsider. I was the stranger, as well as being more extroverted and louder. I had to build my relationship with the people through non-verbal means, by gestures and looks.

      In a cultural and political situation which treats the spoken word with caution and relegates most things to the deeper level of trust, we complemented each other ideally. Markus Schiesser studied Sinology and ethnology in Zurich and China. For over 12 years he has lived and worked in Beijing and Shanghai. He is married to a Chinese woman. We have been friends since the Zurich youth riots of the early 1980s.

      Our working method

      Water is the visually binding element in the film. Like a river, it flows through the individual scenes, stories and interviews. In China it makes sense to comport oneself like water. Wherever it flows, one lets it go, and wherever it is dammed, one gives way to it and finds another route. In this sense, time and patience are very important factors. What appears to be obvious whenever one works with people in a film turns out to be doubly important in China, for cultural and political reasons.

      In China, if you want to get close to the people, you have to give yourself a lot of time. It is a complicated but not unpleasant ritual, during which you spend weeks building up trust, step by step: a first conversation, a second one, drinking tea, smoking, chatting, eating together, slowly getting to the point and always coming back to another toast. The first contact, and how you behave at that point, is crucial.

      Statements director – Luc Schaedler

      WaMa-Statements-director - Watermarks

      Markus Schiesser, Chongqing

      WaMa-Statements-director - Watermarks - WaMa - Statement Director

      Luc Schaedler, Wusutu

      → Facebook.com/watermarksthefilm

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      WaMa – Shooting Locations

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      Watermarks

      Shooting Locations

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      Minqin (Gansu Province)
      Wusutu (Inner Mongolia)

      Both cities lie in the gigantic coal and industry belt that stretches for over 1000 kilometres west to east across northern China. In addition to the destructive exploitation of the landscape this region suffers from severe pollution and water scarcity. Despite all that – or because of it – both places were one of the most fascinating shooting locations I have ever worked at.

      Jiuxiancun (Guangxi Province)

      A small rice-growing village that dates back to the time of the Qing Dynasty (1616-1912). It is situated in the south of China, not far from the tourist-centre of Yangshuo, where rain is plentiful. The region is known for its iconographic landscape, consisting of innumerable karst hills rising above the rice fields. In no other province did the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) rage with such devastating force as in Guangxi.

      Chongqing (independent administrative unit)

      A booming mega-city on the Yangtze, the largest river in China. With over 30 million inhabitants, it is currently one of the most populous cities in the world. In recent years, it has grown with greater intensity and the city is in a constant state of upheaval.

      → Watermarks · 2013

      → Facebook.com/watermarksthefilm

      WaMa-Shooting-Locations - WaMa - Shooting Locations

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      WaMa – Downloads

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      Watermarks

      Downloads

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      ↓ Presskit (english)
      ↓ Dossier de Presse (français)
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      Wastewater, Chongqing

      Wei Jihua Minqin

      Wei Jihua, Minqin

      Flood Jiuxiancun

      Flood, Jiuxiancun

      WaMa-Downloads - WaMa - Downloads

      Chen Chaomei, Chongqing

      Frontiertown Wusutu

      Bordertown, Wusutu

      Li Yuming Jiuxiancun

      Li Yuming, Jiuxiancun

      Wu Dengming Chongqing

      Wu Dengming, Chongqing

      Li Yunchuang Jiuxiancun

      Li Yunchuang, Jiuxiancun

      WaMa-Downloads - WaMa - Downloads

      Rice Growing, Jiuxiancun

      Fishrestaurant Chongqing

      Fishrestaurant, Chongqing

      Wei Guancai Minqin

      Wei Guancai, Minqin

      Fishing Jiuxiancun

      Fishing, Jiuxiancun

      WaMa-Downloads - WaMa - Downloads

      Fishingboat on the Yangtse, Chongqing

      → Watermarks · 2013

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      WaMa – Teaching Materials

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      Watermarks

      Documents for teaching

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      only available in German!

      → Click «Deutsch»
      above to your right ↑

      → auf «Deutsch» klicken
      oben rechts ↑

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      Teaching materials «Watermarks»

      Here you will find the materials for school lessons in thematic order for download (German only)

      The organization ACHAOS (Kinokultur in der Schule) has compiled a pedagogically valuable dossier for interested teachers with questions, suggestions for discussion and information material for school lessons.

      ↓ Dossier to WATERMARKS for school lessons (© ACHAOS)


      Additional materials to download ↓
      in German only!

      ↓ Dossier of Film (.pdf )
      Synopsis, statement of the director, information about the film locations and persons, as well as a list of the topics addressed in the film

      ↓ Geschichte Chinas (.zip)
      ↓ Karten & Texte zur Geographie (.zip)
      ↓ Wirtschaft & Entwicklung (.zip)
      ↓ Umwelt & Ökologie (.zip)
      ↓ Menschenrechte & Rebellion (.zip)
      ↓ PHOTOS der Protagonisten (.zip)
      ↓ PHOTOS vom Film (.zip)
      ↓ PHOTOS der Dreharbeiten (.zip)
      ↓ PHOTOS zur Umweltproblematik (.zip)
      Download the .zip files. Open with double click. In the respective folder you will find the .pdf documents of the texts and maps, as well as the photos as .jpg)

      → Watermarks · 2013

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      AM – Statement Director

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      Angry Monk

      Statement Luc Schaedler

      ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

       

      Why Gendun Choephel

      «The idea for the film «Angry Monk» originated during several trips to China, Tibet and India between 1988 and 1999. Without being aware of it, I travelled to the same places that the protagonist of the movie visited 50 years before. Since 1988 I have been studying the country of Tibet and how the western world perceives it. And I repeatedly came across the name of Gendun Choephel.»

      A wanderer between worlds

      «Gendun Choephel (1903-51) was a wanderer between worlds — at once a dreamer, a rebel and a researcher. He lived in a time that was decisive for the future of his country, between the British colonial invasion of 1903 and the occupation by the Chinese army in 1951. At that time Tibet wasn’t the inaccessible Shangri-La that people often claim, but a torn country on the verge of big changes. Tibet’s attempts to introduce a new social structure and to find its own way into the twentieth century failed because of the resistance of the conservative nobility and the monasteries.»

      Breaking the isolation

      «As Tibet moved towards isolation, Gendun Choephel was open to new experiences. We can trace his path through his writings, articles, pictures and sketches. He looked at his own society in a critical way, was interested in political issues and tried to apply them to everyday life; he was, therefore, the initiator of critical and intellectual thought within Tibetan society.»

      Becoming a role model

      «During his last years, Gendun Choephel became a role model for many young Tibetans in Chinese-occupied Tibet and also for those in exile in India. While their parents lost Tibet, the younger generation looked for role models that would allow a critical view of their own society. But the western world only slowly became aware of Choephel because his life story doesn’t mesh with our rigid image of Tibet, which prefers to portray Tibetans as victims rather than the makers of their own history.»
      Luc Schaedler

      Statement Director - Angry Monk - Luc Schaedler

      Luc Schaedler, 2018

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      AM – Interview Director

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      Angry Monk

      Luc Schaedler

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      Interview with director
      by Till Brockmann, 2005

       

      Why did you chose the title «Angry Monk»?

      A monk is not supposed to be angry. The title is thus contradictory and provocative and that’s intentional; this contradiction is part of what the movie is about. The way the West sees Tibet has more to do with our own projections than with reality. Interestingly, in German and English there is a note of irony in the title which gets completely lost in the Tibetan translation. I found out that the title cannot really be translated into Tibetan. Apparently the combination of «angry» and «monk» is not planned…

      Why a film about Tibet?

      I travelled a lot in Asia and I often passed through Tibet. I first went to Tibet in 1989, shortly after the Tiananmen massacre in Bejing – during the time of the Lhasa uprisings. I also worked on Tibetan issues during my anthropology studies at university. A part of me is always on the road, seeking an encounter with all things foreign. My film is surely also the result of this personal interest, a way to give it a shape. But it also has purpose to actively participate in a specific discourse, the discussion that the West had long been having about Tibet.

      Why a road movie?

      It was the idea from the beginning. Somehow that’s the point of the whole story. Because in a broader sense the whole life of Gendun Choephel, the central figure, was a journey. A journey from the border provinces to the city of Lhasa. From there he went abroad and came back again. Apart from this outer journey, there was the inner journey of a man who, agile-minded as he was, always remained «on the road».

      And furthermore, as already mentioned, the film is structured like that because I got to know Tibet as a traveller, too. Finally, a last aspect, the film is a dialogue with the past which is also a kind of travelling, time-travelling so to speak: the film moves back and forth between present and past that mirror each other…

      What about a permission to film?

      I was aware from the beginning that the authorities would have informants and therefore always knew what was going on. Thus, shooting secretly and getting an official permit for a bigger project were out of question. For that reason I had the idea to work with a small and unobtrusive team; actually, just the cameraman Filip Zumbrunn and me. We behaved like tourists, like teachers who wanted to show the video material to their students back home.

      Partly we were shooting the usual stuff: markets, monasteries, like all tourists do… (smiling), but we were really lucky, too; if we had been searched at some point and they would have found all the many videocassettes, who knows… But even if the film is critical of China, I clearly never meant to make a film against China. What I am interested in is the inner dynamics of Tibet and in this regard China is just one of the factors. After all I’m critical of Tibetan culture as well.

      What do you mean by that?

      First of all, I’m very critical of the one-sided way the West looks at Tibet: as a spiritual refuge, an inspiration for the mind… some managers even go to Buddhist monasteries to prepare for the next round of globalization debates. A lot of damage is done by reducing Tibet to a peace-loving pseudo-paradise, perceiving it as «Shangri-la» with all the Tibetans having a spiritual message ready for us. I believe this harms the struggle for Tibetan indepence. Furthermore, I find the romanticizing of the past rather problematic, though Tibet gets idealized not only in the West but by Tibetans as well.

      For instance, hardly 5% of the people controlled the whole country and the mingling of religion and politics developed into an unholy alliance of the aristocracy and the monastic establishment. This prevented necessary reforms and a policy of openness. Such things are often forgotten. Gendun Choephel and many others as well, such as the predecessor of the present Dalai Lama, were open for change but they failed time and again with their ideas because of the opposition of conservative forces who of course defend their privileges.

      Was your critical approach intentional?

      Yes, of course. There are so many films full of admiration for the monasteries, for the lamaism and also for the nomadic society which has been celebrated as a remnant of an age-old, intact culture. Similarly, I dislike political reports that make us believe that Tibet is a destroyed culture and that any resistance against the Chinese is defeated or futile in the end.

      But the situation is more complex and indeed a paradox: on the one hand so much has been destroyed since the invasion in 1950, especially during the cultural revolution it was done with meticulous precision. On the other hand, the Tibetans prove every day that there is a life under the Chinese. They have preserved their culture and language, they have kept alive more than one thinks. For instance, many of Gendun Choephel’s writings and paintings featured in my film, have been preserved in Tibet. In this sense Gendun Choephel becomes part of this «survival».

      What I mean to say is that the Tibetans shouldn’t be perceived just as victims but as a people who have managed very cleverly to resist the Chinese and who will go on showing their subversive spirit. I never intended to make a purely biographical film on Gendun Choephel, but he serves as a key to the understanding of the history and the complex present of Tibet. Choephel was a man with many sides who had fought for change and at the same time remained a Buddhist all his life. He never turned his back to his own culture.

      I deliberately chose to have only Tibetans speak about Gendun Choephel in my film: old people who knew him and other Tibetans of a later generation. At the end I cut out all the Western scholars and Tibet experts whom I had interviewed as well…

      Why is the Dalai Lama missing?

      I did this on purpose. Probably it would have been easy enough to get an interview with him. But I didn’t want his presence to dominate the film and the other interview partners to be pushed to the background. No matter what he would have said about Gendun Choephel, it would have been a confirmation for many that the film is justified. I didn’t want that, I didn’t want to have this «offical stamp». In my view it is very important that there is a parallel discussion on Tibet which doesn’t rely exclusively on the voice of the Dalai Lama.

      AM-Interview-Director - Angry Monk - Luc Schaedler

      Luc Schaedler, shooting of «Angry Monk», 2001

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      AM – Bio Gendun Choephel

      ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

      Angry Monk

      A short Biography

      ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

       

      Childhood in Eastern Tibet
      (1903-1927)

      He was born 1903 in a small village in eastern Tibet, near the silk road, at the Chinese border, in a remote region populated by nomads. This region was inhabited by Muslims, Chinese and Tibetans that were constantly fighting each other. The villages often were attacked and looted by warlords. In this explosive and mixed cultural climate Gendun Choephel started to be interested in his Tibetan identity early on.

      He received a traditional education as a monk in the most important monastery of the region, where he developped a friendship with an American missionary that the other monks and his family resented. In 1927 he left the monastery and moved to Lhasa with a caravan of merchants.

      Monastery education in Lhasa
      (1927-34)

      In Lhasa Gendun Choephel studied in Drepung, the biggest monastery in the world. His rebellious attempts to bypass the monastery’s rules annoyed the other monks. Ultimately, monastic life suffocated him too much in Lhasa as well and he left the monastery. Afterwards he survived as a portrait painter and artist for rich aristocrats in Lhasa. In 1934 he met Rahul Sankrityayan, an Indian researcher of Buddhist teachings who also was a communist activist for the Indian struggle for independence from British colonialists.

      Journey across Tibet (1934-1938)

      Rahul Sankrityayan and Gendun Choephel travelled together across Tibet searching for old texts that were destroyed in India centuries earlier but had survived in remote monasteries in Tibet. For Rahul, historical research is part of his political fight; for him researching history is the key to the present. Gendun Choephel was Rahuls translator as well as his mediator for Tibetan culture. At the same time the fascinating stories about India awoke his curiosity.

      Journey across India (1938-1946)

      In India, Gendun Choephel was confronted with a foreign world. For the first time he saw a railway and other technological achievements. India was then undergoing radical changes and, contrary to Tibet, the Indians took their destiny into their own hands. The fight for independece was at its peak. Gendun Choephel’s view of his own culture started to change; in India he experienced the most creative phase of his life.

      He travelled across the country as a Buddhist pilgrim, lived in the crowded city of Calcutta, saw the ocean, visited brothels and libraries, wrote his first newspaper articles and translated the Kamasutra in Tibetan, enriching it with his own experiences. He sent many of his writings, notes and sketches back to Tibet in order to convey his impressions of a foreign world.

      Return to Tibet (1946-51)

      In 1946 Gendun Choephel returned to Tibet passing through the Indian-Tibetan border town of Kalimpong which, next to British and Chinese agents, was a nest of radical Tibetans who fell out of grace with Lhasa’s government. In 1939 they founded the Tibetan Revolutionary Party. Choephel got acquainted with the party and designed their logo: a sickle crossed by a sword. The Tibetan Revolutionary Party’s goal was to overthrow the tyrannical regime in Lhasa.

      In Lhasa (1946-51)

      When Gendun Choephel arrived in Lhasa the Tibetan government was already informed about his political activities. He began to write the political history of Tibet but this attempt was abruptly stopped by his arrest. He was accused of insurrection and thrown in jail for three years.

      In 1949 he was freed. But his heart was broken and he drowned his desperation in alcohol. Soon afterwards the Chinese army overran the Tibetan troops in eastern Tibet and, in 1951, shortly after the occupation of Lhasa by the Chinese army, Gendun Choephel died. Supposedly he commented on the political events of his era in this way: «Now we are in deep shit!»

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      More on Gendun Choephel:

      Biography of Gendun Choephel by Donald Lopez Jr.
      (Chicago University Press)

      Short Biography of Gendun Choephel
      (Archive.Today)

      More information on Gendun Choephel
      (Rigpa Wiki)

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      AM-Bio-Gendun-Choephel - Angry Monk - AM - Bio Gendun Choephel

      Gendun Choephel shortly before his death, 1951

       

      AM - Bio Gendun Choephel - angry monk - am-bio-gendun-choephel

      Gendun Choephel, 1940’s

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      AM – Poems Gendun Choephel

      ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

      Angry Monk

      Some Poems of Gendun Choephel

      ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

       

      On British colonialism
      Calcutta 1941

      Sponsored by kings and ministers
      the colonialists sent out
      a great army of bandits,
      calling them traders.

      They introduced
      new forms of living,
      but their laws
      were only good
      for the educated and wealthy.

      As for the poor,
      their small livelihoods
      are sucked like blood
      from all their orifices.

      It is in this way
      that the so-called wonders
      of the world were built,
      such as railroads and high buildings.

      I am an astute beggar,
      who spent his life listening.
      I know what I’m talking about.

       

      From his Notebook
      Tibet 1946

      In Tibet
      Everything that is old
      Is a work of Buddha
      And everything that is new
      Is a work of the Devil
      This is the sad tradition of our country

       

      The World is flat
      Tibet Mirror Press, 1938

      In olden days,
      even in Europe,
      the world was thought to be flat.

      And when some intelligent people
      claimed the opposite,
      they were exposed to various difficulties,
      such as being burnt alive.

      Today, even in Buddhist countries
      everybody knows,
      that the world is round.

      However in Tibet,
      we still stubbornly state
      that the world is flat.

       

      Foreword of his Kamasutra translation
      Calcutta 1939

      As for me
      I have little shame
      I love women.

      Every man has a woman
      Every woman has a man
      Both in their mind
      Desire sexual union

      What chance is the for clean behaviour?
      If natural passions are openly banned
      Unnatural passions will grow in secrecy

      No law of religion
      No law of morality
      Can suppress the natural passion of mankind

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      Gendun Choephel’s Poems
      translated by Donald Lopez Jr.

      (University of Chicago Press)

      AM-Poems-Gendun-Choephel - Angry Monk - AM - Poems Gendun Choephel

      Gendun Choephel, 1940’s

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      AM – Downloads

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      Angry Monk

      Downloads – Promotion

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      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion - AM - Downloads

      Novices, Yama Tashi Kyil

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion

      Monk, Yama Tashi Kyil

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion - AM - Downloads

      On the Road, Tibet

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion

      Monk, Yama Tashi Kyil

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion

      Hindu Pilgrim, Varanasi, Indien

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion - AM - Downloads

      Filip Zumbrunn, DoP

       

      AM-Downloads - angry monk - promotion

      Luc Schaedler, Director

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