A Light Lit Suddenly in the Dark—Taiwan’s Political Awakening

It was once an absolute taboo, but when the forbidden door was opened, it became a bargaining chip in political power struggle. However, the more mature a society, the fewer taboos there are. As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of A City of Sadness, let us look back to our adolescent years, as well as the long journey that the Taiwanese society has gone through. 

About the Documentary
A City of Sadness
Directed by: Hou Hsiao-hsien

In 1945, Taiwan was returned to the Republic of China. The film tells the story of four brothers who live in Jiufen, a town near Taipei. The eldest brother is a gangster, like their father. The second brother was sent to the Philippines during the war, but he never returned. The third brother was recruited to Southeast Asia during the war as well, but when he returned, he became mentally ill. The fourth brother is a photographer. He does not need to serve in the military because he is deft. On February 27, 1947, police officers kill a woman while confiscating illegal cigarettes. The February 28th Incident breaks out, and endless sadness envelops the city. The film won the Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival.