Ash Is Purest White

Part of Curators' Choice 2019
Saturday, January 4, 2020, 7:00 p.m.
Museum of the Moving Image - Bartos Screening Room

Dir. Jia Zhangke. 2018, 136 mins. Digital projection. With Zhao Tao, Liao Fan. In Chinese (Mandarin) with English subtitles. With his modern-day wuxia A Touch of Sin (2013), mainland Chinese auteur Jia Zhangke abruptly changed lanes from the realist aesthetics that had established his bonafides, in works such as Platform and Still Life, to a more mixed mode where realism infuses and enlivens the traditional structures of genre and melodrama. Ash Is Purest White represents the third, and perhaps finest film in this register, a saga of love and betrayal among the Triads that becomes a historical epic of the birth of 21st-century China. Rendered with the plaintive sweep of a classical Chinese landscape and built around a ferocious performance from Zhao Tao, Jia’s long-time leading lady, Ash Is Purest White reaffirms its director’s place at the forefront of world cinema.

Tickets: $15 ($11 seniors and students / $9 youth (ages 3–17) / free or discounted for Museum members. Order tickets online. (Members may contact [email protected] with questions regarding online reservations.)

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