Suburban Birds. 2018. China. Directed by Qiu Sheng. Mandarin with English subtitles. 118 min.
Qiu Sheng’s feature debut is an entrancing, enigmatic work in which multiple plotlines run tantalizingly in parallel before intersecting in surprising ways. In one, a team of surveyors tries to figure out why a suburban landscape seems to be subsiding before construction on a new transit begins, sparking politically charged tensions among the group. Meanwhile, a gang of children loiter and set out on youthful adventures, until one of them disappears... Adopting a subtly radical approach to exploring memory (and forgetting) and rich with visual ideas, Suburban Birds promises a major new voice in Chinese cinema. A Cinema Guild release. North American Premiere