Behemoth

2015  ·  Feature Film  ·  90mins

Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,

Where wealth accumulates, and men decay;

-- Oliver Goldsmith, The Deserted Village (1770)

 

Over two centuries ago, British poet Goldsmith wrote down these words, and they describe our present day so perfectly.

 

Human behavior has always performed itself with lunacy and absurdity, and we have never been able to rid our body of greed and arrogance. The spiral journey of civilization is thus filled with deviations and regressions. It seems as if we are taken by a force, monstrous, invisible and unconquerable.

 

However, we created this invisible beast ourselves. It is our desire. We are the victim and the victimizer.

 

In The Divine Comedy, Dante travels in his dreams through Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. In BEHEMOTH I borrow this idea and depict an enormous industry chain: coal mining – iron mining – iron manufacture – architectual reinforcing bar manufacture – the construction of “ghost town” in Erdos. The colour of red, grey and blue represents respectively Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. Through the contemplative gaze of this film, I investigate the living conditions of industrial workers as well as the short-sighted urban development. It is my critique and meditation on the modern civilization.

 

 

 

SELECTIONS

 

  •  72nd Mostra Internazionale d’Arte Cinematografica Venezia Italy

  •  Venice in Naples 2015. The extended cinema Italy

  •  Tetrio Millennio Film Fest – Roma Italy

  •  Viennale - Austria

  •  CPH: DOX - Denmark

  •  IDFA Amsterdam - Netherlands

  •  Traces de Vies – Festival du film documentaire Clermont Ferrand / Vic Le Comte - France

  •  Stockholm International Film Festival  Sweden

  •  TOKYO FILMeX Japan

  •  Porto/Post/Doc Film et Media Festival - Portugal

  •  WATCH DOCS Human Rights in Film IFF Varsaw - Poland

  •  Dubai International Film Festival -  United Arab Emirates

 

 

 

AWARDS

 

Mostra Internazionale d’Arte Cinematografica Venezia Italie

  •  GREEN DROP AWARD

  •  PRIX SIGNIS

 

Stockholm International Film Festival  Suède

  •  BEST DOCUMENTARY

 

TOKYO FILMeX Japon

  •  SPECIAL JURY PRIZE

 

Porto/Post/Doc Film et Media Festival Portugal

  •  GREAT PRIZE PORTO/POST/DOC

  •  TEENAGE PRIZE

 

WATCH DOCS Human Rights in Film IFF Varsaw Pologne

  •  WATCH DOCS AWARDS for the best film in competition (ex aequo)

 

The 40th Hong Kong International Film Festival

  •  FIREBIRD AWARD of Documentary Competition

 

 

 

Summary statement: at the date of 8 January 2016

 

  •  FIPA 19 au 24 January 2016 Biarritz - France

  •  CENSURADOS FILM FESTIVAL Lima Peru 16 up 21 February 2016

  •  ZagrebDox Croatia 21 up to 28 February 2016

  •  ACROSS ASIA FILM FESTIVAL Cagliari Sardinia Italia 23 up 28 February 2016

  •  TRUE/FALSE FILM FESTIVAL Columbia Missouri USA 3 up 6 March 2016

  •  FFIDH Festival du Film et Forum international sur les Droits Humains – Geneva  -  Switzerland 4 up to 13 March 2016

  •  One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival Prague Czech Republic 7 up 16 March 2016

  •  New Directors/New Films (presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and The Museum of Modern Art) – New York - 16 up to 27 March 2016

  •  Hong Kong International Film Festival 21 march up to 4 April 2016

  •  Ambulante Gira de Documentales in 8 States in Mexico - 31 March up to 2 June 2016

  •  International Film Festival - Istanbul – Turkey 7 up to 17 April 2016

  •  All True – 21st International Documentary Film Festival  Sao Paulo/ Rio de Janeiro Brazil 7 up 17 April 2016

  •  ICA - Institute of Contemporary Arts London April 2016

  •  DOCS AGAINST GRAVITY FF Warsaw Poland 13 up 22 May 2016

  •  Melbourne International Film Festival Australia 28 July up to 14 August 2016 

 

 

 

Links

 

  •  Film Review: ‘Behemoth’ - Variety

  •  'Behemoth': Review - Screen Daily

  •  MoMA: Behemoth (Beixi moshuo). 2015. Directed by Zhao Liang

  •  ND/NF Interview: Zhao Liang

  •  New Directors/New Films 2016

  •  The Cost of our Quest for Development: Zhao Liang's Behemoth

  •  True/False 2016: Behemoth – first look

Trailer (6mins)

Full Film (92mins)

Stills

© zhaoliang studio