China | 140 min.
DUAL FORMAT RELEASE INCLUDING BLU-RAY AND DVD VERSIONS OF THE FILM
• Gorgeous 24fps transfer of the film in its original 2.35:1 aspect ratio
• New and improved English subtitle translations
• Tony Rayns on THE WORLD: a new and exclusive 21-minute video introduction to the film by scholar and critic Tony Rayns
• Made in China: a 68-minute documentary on the making of The World
• The World According to Jia Zhangke: a 25-minute video interview with the director
• A lengthy booklet containing a new essay about the film by Tony Rayns; an essay by Jia Zhangke; and a special dossier-afterword with further commentary on certain elements of the film and its ending
Jia Zhangke, 2004
The fourth feature by internationally acclaimed auteur Jia Zhangke was also his breakout success, an epic with a canvas as vast, and intimate, as its title suggests: a state-of-the-modern-world address, and a look at the insular world of a troupe of Chinese stage-performers dreaming of freedom…
Zhao Tao, Jia’s muse, is one of these troupers. For Tao and the larger ensemble of pageant performers at Beijing’s real-life World Park (a sprawling hyper-pastiche of global landmarks — “famous sites from five continents”), love is respite from work, work is respite from love, and the line that extends from the past to the future loses all definition beyond the present.
A testament to the wisdom of this young filmmaker who arrived in the late 1990s with Xiao Wu and, in 2000, Platform (regarded by many to be the greatest film of the 2000s), Shijie / The World provides an image of globalisation as a paradox: at once a phenomenon rooted in social control, and a network that allows connection across individual people and populations. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present both Jia Zhangke and his film The World to Blu-ray for the first time ever.