TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – In time for the Beijing Olympics, Up the Yangtze documents a journey into the heart of the Chinese Dream. With her family on the verge of becoming environmental refugees, Yu Shui departs to work for the opportunistic tourism company, Farewell Cruises, on the quickly changing Yangtze River. A strikingly personal vignette set deep in the waters of China’s controversial Three Gorges Dam project, the documentary explores the social implications of what has been dubbed by some as an ‘economic miracle.’ In an act of cinematic alchemy, Chinese-Canadian filmmaker Yung Chang turns a quest for fiscal prowess into a story on human ambition and survival.
Variety reviews the documentary as a “gloriously cinematic doc of epic, poetic sadness…”
Time Out New York calls Up the Yangtze “a potent indictment of the dam-age done! Says more about what’s being lost —culturally, geographically, morally— than any parade of talking heads ever could.”
Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary at Sundance, Up the Yangtze is set to show at the Traverse City Film Festival on July 31st. View the trailer. Learn more from Circle of Blue coverage of China’s water challenges.