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’Til Madness Do Us Part

’Til Madness Do Us Part

疯爱
Wang Bing
Hong Kong, France, Japan
2013
228 min
n.a.
Retrospective: Wang Bing
Synopsis

Wang Bing filmed for four months in the men’s ward of a psychiatric institution in a poor area of southwest China. The reasons for the involuntary detentions vary widely: from murder and mental breakdown to political activity. This background goes unmentioned as Wang follows more than 20 men in turn. We only see their name and length of stay—sometimes longer than 15 years.

Calmly paced and in a strictly observational style, Wang brings this isolated world devoid of privacy close to the viewer, in sometimes very intimate moments. As if to say: don’t forget them. Wandering the barred corridors, past the TV room and into the dingy dormitories, the camera reveals rebelliousness and emptiness, uncomfortable family visits, and rounds of medication. But also hesitant singing and sometimes a glimmer of light.

There is no freedom. Yet the search for some form of freedom and warmth together cannot be suppressed. One resident even has a girlfriend in the women’s section, even though there are bars between them. Only once does Wang take us outside the institution, when someone is allowed to go home on leave—with unexpected results.

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Credits
228 min
color
DCP
Spoken languages: Chinese
Director
    Wang Bing
    Wang Bing
Production
    Wang Bing,
    Louise Prince
    Wang Bing,
    Louise Prince
Co-production
    Yang Wang,
    Miyuki Takei
    Yang Wang,
    Miyuki Takei
Cinematography
    Wang Bing,
    Xianhui Liu
    Wang Bing,
    Xianhui Liu
Editing
    Adam Kerby,
    Wang Bing
    Adam Kerby,
    Wang Bing
Sound
    Mu Zhang
    Mu Zhang
World Sales
    Asian Shadows
    Asian Shadows
Screening copy
    Asian Shadows
    Asian Shadows

Stills

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More from the program section Retrospective: Wang Bing
In tribute to our Guest of Honor, IDFA presents six films directed by Wang Bing from 2002 to today. An uncompromising voice of present-day Chinese filmmaking, his work fearlessly chronicles socioeconomic transformations and challenging labor conditions in China.
View program section
Alone

Alone

Wang Bing
2012
89 min