Lu Xuechang


Lu Xuechang
b. 1964, Beijing
Film director
Lu Xuechang’s movies are defined less by their style than by the common subject—the coming of age of contemporary urban youth. As with many fellow filmmakers of the so-called ‘Sixth Generation’ (see Sixth Generation (film directors)), Lu is concerned with the changing values and lifestyle of contemporary society. However, despite showing the confused and dangerous side of modernity, his movies maintain an idealistic, almost optimistic, point of view.
While the leading characters of his movies are anti-heroic, Lu is not afraid to use also traditional, positive heroes to lead the characters in the search for awareness.
Lu studied painting for four years at the Central Academy of Fine Arts before entering the Directing Department of the Beijing Film Academy, where he graduated in 1990. After joining the Beijing Film Studio he directed several short films before shooting his controversial first full-length feature, The Making of Steel (Zhanda chengren., 1998), the story of a young boy’s coming of age during the Cultural Revolution (see Tian Zhuangzhuang). The movie, exploring the meaning of heroism in rapidly modernizing China through the relationship between the young worker and an older train driver, was severely censored and revised many times before being approved for distribution. Lu’s second feature, A Lingering Face (Feichang xiari, 2000), based on the real event of a woman’s rape and the witness to the crime, despite being more commercial in style, maintained the true-to-life qualities of all his work. His third and most recent film is Cala, My Dog! (Kala shitiaogou, 2003), produced by Feng Xiaogang and starring Ge You, is about a worker fighting the system.
MARIA BARBIERI

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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