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Retracing the Long March on screen
Latest Updated by 2006-10-20 09:27:51
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Retracing the Long March on screen

To mark the 70th anniversary of the victory of the Red Army's Long March, a number of films and TV series have landed on the screens.

In addition to the ongoing TV series on CCTV-1, the 20-episode drama "Impregnable Pass, Boundless Path," a total of 16 films with Long March themes are being aired on CCTV-6. And now the documentary "My Long March," produced by noted CCTV host Cui Yongyuan, is airing every Sunday night on the CCTV News channel. The film "My Long March" is also being screened nationally.

The film "My Long March," directed by Zhai Junjie from the August First Film Studio, recreates the Long March panorama through the experience of an ordinary soldier.

"As one of the most important revolutionary events in China's history, the Long March has been put on screen many times," Zhai said. "Like World War II, the related films and TV series are shot again and again, like 'Saving Private Ryan' and 'Patton.' As a nation, we need heroes and we should honor heroes."

During the past 13 years, Zhai directed two works with Long March themes. "Unlike the previous two, this time, I focused on a young Red Army soldier. In addition to the battles, I also paid attention to the people in them. We were able to use digital special effects to show the Xiangjiang battle scenes and many other climatic parts," Zhai said.

First airing Oct. 16, "Impregnable Pass, Boundless Path," produced and created by the People's Liberation Army Film Studio, tells the little-known stories of the Second and Sixth Front Armies.

"It is meaningless to tell the story on screen in the style of annals. Few people are interested in dull history. To tell Long March stories, we should grasp figures in history," said "Impregnable Pass, Boundless Path" screenwriter Ouyang Qinsen.

Since the founding of the People's Republic of China, Long March films have become almost an industry in themselves. To name some of the best known: "The Trials of a Long Journey" filmed in 1959, "Break Through the Wujiang River" in the 1960s, and "Cross the Chishui River Four Times" in the 1970s.

In 2000, the TV series "The Long March," starring Tang Guoqiang as Mao Zedong, won great acclaim.

Currently rebroadcast every night on Hunan TV and Xinjiang TV, the series not only depicts the tough life on the Long March, but also elaborates on the sophisticated struggles between the Red Army and its enemies.

Showing the complexity of historical figures is another strength of the series. It portrays Mao Zedong as a complex character combining strategist, revolutionary, poet and husband.

Editor: Yan

By: Source: Szdaily web edition
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