The fourth Beijing International Film Festival opened on Wednesday, and it looks like it's already less boring than last year's. For that we have the Oscar-winning director Oliver Stone to thank, who on Thursday in a panel discussion spoke provocatively on Mao Zedong and urged the Chinese to confront their history. As The Hollywood Reporter reports:
If you're not following Chris Buckley (@ChuBailiang) on Twitter, you probably should. The New York Times reporter who gave us panda TV (addendum: postmodern panda watching pandas on TV), double-decker bus-driving fail, and his timely "Pulitzer Prize" series of tweets (e.g., "...for urban planning goes to Zhengzhou for planting trees under an expressway") is who we should thank for the above, via People.cn, which really needs no additional commentary.
The new deputy chief of Qianjiang township in Laibin, Guangxi is dead. Zhong Xiefei, on the night of April 9, died while solemnly performing his duty as loyal servant of the people. Let this be a warning for all those in China who aspire for public office...
Those of you who follow us will know about C4, the sometimes funny, certainly unique, not-unnoteworthy comedy/variety show via China Radio International that we sporadically syndicate. Among the fun things that hosts Rob Hemsley and Stuart Wiggin have done recently -- though not quite as good as "The Panda" -- is a bloopers segment that featured none other than Xi Jinping.
"Unexplained disturbances" caused a glass door to shatter on Line 1 of the subway system in Shenyang, Liaoning province this morning, though the likely cause, per chatter on microblogs, is a fight that occurred inside the train.
The latest update on still-missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 -- New York Times: "China’s Actions in Hunt for Jet Are Seen as Hurting as Much as Helping" -- puts the attention on China's naval incompetence and prestige hunting. Apparently good intentions don't get you good press. I read the Times's article while slowly shaking my head at the entirety of the MH370 situation/mess. Then I came to this quote:
There are some serious amateur filmmakers working for the United States's Federal Bureau of Investigation -- I can think of no other reason why Game of Pawns would exist: a nearly half-hour mini-movie that tells the story of Glenn Duffie Shriver, who was bribed by Chinese officials when he was studying in Shanghai to pass along sensitive information. Shriver made $70,000 before he was caught. He's now in the US serving out a four-year sentence in federal prison.
Here's a strange little story from the other side of the world. Frances Chan, a 20-year-old history major at Yale, was apparently told by her school's health center officials that she was dangerously underweight at 92 pounds. She's 5-foot-2, and according to the ideal weight calculator, someone between her age and height should weigh at least 97 pounds. As Chan wrote on Huffington Post last month about her ordeal:
A recently produced short film from GVAcreative has gone viral, built on the idea that Hong Kong, since being "passed over" to China in 1997, is becoming less like what it was and that its past will eventually be gone. "The city is dying, just like a man who has lost a lot of blood,” says one of the characters in voice-over.
What's your cure for pain? If you say television, you're sadder than sad can be. But if you say television and you're a giant panda, you must live in the plushy confines of Yunnan Wild Animal Park. Check out the smirk on that ursine flaneur!
First published in November 2008 on the old Danwei under the headline "RMB 3 million foreign douche bag in Shanghai" -- aged mp3 link newly restored! -- this tape is a genuine recording from Sherpa’s from a freewheeling customer who really likes comped hamburgers and isn’t afraid to show it. At one point the brutal laowai -- use of the term here meant as pejoratively as possible -- tells the Sherpa's operator, who gives her name as Sunny, that she doesn't have a "sunny disposition" and chastises her on lacking a "sunny attitude."
Global Times is back with another reader contest, "What are your misconceptions?" Those who answer that question as it relates to China -- with either short essay (150-250 words), photo, video, etc. ("the possibilities are endless!" Endless?) -- can win a stay at the Grand Millennium Beijing. So, Global Times, mind if we get an example?
PEN America organized a protest called "Take a Stand for Free Expression in China: An Evening of Literary Protest" last Thursday, April 10, in front of the Brooklyn Public Library in New York. Ai Weiwei was more or less the face of the event, attended by several hundreds of people / bored Brooklynites, which was also had the purpose of raising awareness of persecuted Chinese writers. Art Daily reports that Ai Weiwei appeared via video message to thank his supporters.
The 11th Adult Care Expo, i.e. Shanghai Sexpo, ended on Sunday, and if you weren't there for any of the three-day extravaganza of awkward gazing/touching/posing and shameless mobile recording inside the Shanghai International Exhibition Center, we'll fill you in: there were a lot of sex toys and aphrodisiacs, a lot of phalluses, a few AV stars but way more scantily clad girls -- sometimes dancing, sometimes doing something... we don't know -- and a lot of QPR codes, often on skin, because sexpos have gone digital, baby.
At least 15 people were sent to the hospital after a passenger train derailed early Sunday morning (3:17 am) in Hailun county in the city of Suihua, Heilongjiang province, Xinhua reports. The train, K7034, departed from Heihe, Heilongjiang and was headed for Harbin, the provincial capital. There were no reported deaths.
Forget human rights, which will not, I promise you, get the man on the 5F dancefloor to lose his groove. Forget censorship, because who cares about cultural emasculation? Forget Zhou Yongkang, school stabbings, Diaoyu Islands, corruption, Sichuan earthquakes, shoddy construction. Take a lesson from the New York Times when it wants to link-bait: head over to the US embassy's Beijing air Twitter account and report the latest AQI, because nothing -- absolutely nothing -- unites the English-reading populace of China quite like bad air.