God Man Dog (Liu lang shen gao ren)

Taiwan 2007, Feature film, 119' | Director, Screenplay Singing Chen | DoP Shen Ko-shang | Editor Singing Chen, Liao Ching-sung, Chen Xiao-dong | Sound Dennis Y.F.Tsao, Lo Song-ce | Music Sakamo Hiromichi | Cast Tarcy Su, Jack Kao, Chang Hang, Ulau Ugan, Jonathan Chang, Tu Xiao-han | Production Ya-Mei Li

Synopsis
“The world has become unhinged, and this matches how the title of the film is nicely divided up into three parts, the first and last of which are symmetrically constructed as palindromes, identical whether read forwards or backwards: "God"/"Dog". But what about the middle! Man as an individual and humanity as a whole get everything mixed up: "Man" is not satisfied with his position in the middle, he wants to reach for the stars, have unlimited power, and he keeps on being dragged down into animal-like behaviour. And so these attempts to create order appear to be desperate, or at best ridiculous.” Helmut Merker, taz

A woman with post-natal depression and a pathological sense of order. An alcoholic who transports peaches while his wife polishes plastic noodle soup beakers and their daughter makes a career for herself in the city as a boxer. A hedonist who hides in the boots of buses and lorries, because this is how he can “see the world”. A trucker who drives a large illuminated Buddha around, and who is saving up for a new artificial leg. A traffic accident triggered by stray dogs connects and changes the life of all those involved.

Singing Chen draws an unconventional picture of Taiwan by getting people from very different backgrounds to come together. In doing so, the director manages to keep the various threads of plot up in the air like balls being juggled, so that their flight paths cross over in wonderful and unexpected ways. A puzzle that is put together bit by bit. Even if God Man Dog is reminiscent of Iñárritus Amores Perros, the director gives the film a very Taiwanese feeling, through the music, humour and unusual surprises in the narrative flow. Jack Gao was nominated for the Asian Film Award for his part as the trucker Yellow Bull.

 

Biography
Singing Chen
was born in 1974 in Taipei. She studied Communication Sciences at the Fu-Jen Catholic University close to Taipei. In 2000, she made her first full-length feature film Wo jiao a-ming la (Bundled), which won many awards including Best Feature Film and Best Young Woman Director at the Taipei Film Festival. In the same year, she made the experimental short documentary Shei Lai Diao Yu®? (Floating Island – Who is Fishing®?) In 2003, she directed the television film The Wedding, nominated for six Golden Bell Awards. As well as directing and writing screenplays, Singing Chen also writes music for theatre and film.

Singing Chen
Taiwan
2007
Feature Film
2009
Feature Film Competition