May 15, 2021

A ‘thriller’ born from the dark bowels of China | Culture

Trailer for ‘The lake of the wild goose’.

With just four movies, Chinese filmmaker Diao Yinan (Xi’an, 50 years old) has become one of the looks of those who raffle at festivals. He, however, struggles to attract all kinds of audiences through a genre that handles efficiently: thriller. If with your third job, Black Coal, Thin Ice (2014) won the Berlin Golden Bear, with his new movie, The wild goose lake, He participated in the last edition of Cannes.

A week before the premiere in Spain of this powerful film, Diao Yinan telephoned a handful of interviews. It was days before the closure of Wuhan was declared, the city in which the coronavirus pandemic has broken out, and where it develops The wild goose lake. Still in love with Buñuel’s cinema, But in this story, which intertwines the lives of a half-haired gangster who has just been released from prison is involved in the murder of a policeman and a prostitute who seeks to free himself from his work, the referents have changed. “In this case, I leave Buñuel behind, and immerse myself more in my own life, in what I know of the low funds of the growing Chinese cities. A part of the script is born of news and references to current social changes” , Diao reels. “And another comes from an artistic work like never before. The combination of authorship, independence and the seriousness of a director, and his commercial achievements is fundamental: that cocktail creates a mature film.” That’s why he drank from Dashiell Hammett, from the Hollywood Warner cinema of the golden age … “Black cinema fascinates me, I like those references you mention. My taste was born from that filmography. And Hammett fascinates me spirit, its social description, I suspect it is already in my DNA. “

For this reflection of the present, the police and criminals dress almost identically: in the streets there is no one who differentiates them: “In China there is a saying that ensures that the police and gangsters are from the same family. If anyone wants stop a criminal, it is impossible to go in uniform. And he must use the same violence. That is why the agents behave just as they do in my film. ” From this point of view, everything is mixed, the gray zone prevails in a society in which there is neither good nor bad. “True, there are failures, corruption problems anywhere. I have not built the story near that rot, but to exist, it exists. In the end, we are all human, with luminous parts and dark facets. Maybe in people focused on crime, on the black side, the moments of nobility shine brighter. “

Diao Yinan performs through thriller a broad social portrait, because it belongs to the generation of filmmakers who go beyond the genre to go further. “The tense atmosphere serves to attract the public. And from there we take the leap. That an army of policemen disembark in the low-lying Wuhan is usual, and reflects the current behavior of power. Good locations account for half the success of a film. On the future of my country, let’s say that my attitude is … complex but optimistic. But we are experiencing an accelerated development of the economy, and we will suffer ups and downs. ” By the way, is that soccer jersey of the Argentine national team wearing one of the characters, is it a tribute? “Rather, I chose it because of the colors. Blue and white represent the pure and freedom. But I have to tell you that my favorite style of play is created by the Spanish team.”


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