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ONE DAY IN MAY

Documentary 2h 25m 2011

This documentary is filmed and produced, independently, in one and half years following the catastrophic earthquake on May 12, 2008, in Sichuan Province, China.

How has the entire society been changed by a sudden disaster? In addition to a collective response to the disaster by the state and organizations, what is the cold reality faced by every individual whose life was forever changed by the disaster? How could survivors be courageous enough to build a post-disaster life? How can we, as outsiders, truly understand the feeling of helplessness, and determination of people after their hopes for life were destroyed abruptly?

The film tries to record the life of an ordinary Sichuan family affected by the quake. Behind their optimism and hidden grief, we try to unveil a true picture of living in rural China. We see both fragility and brightness of humanity amid a major disaster. But when a memorial service is turned into a celebration, and conscience is absent as memories fade, how can those individuals manage to move on?

Any individual may impossibly represent a country, a nation, or a region, especially because we have been used to a mainstream perspective which often ignores the value of individuals. However we respect such a value, as well as the meaning of the struggle of those who were previously ignored. Only with this individual perspective, one after another, can we see a true, bigger picture of this devastating disaster in human history.

One day in May might be just a normal day in a normal May past in your life. But for some others, this very day is long enough to be forever.

Director

Ma Zhandong

Languages

Sichuan Dialect, Mandarin

Country

China