Dead Souls (Si hun ling)

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Movie Info & Cast

Synopsis

A dozen aging survivors are interviewed from Jiabiangou, a complex of three work camps in Northwest China where supposed rightists were sent for re-education in the 1950s and 1960s under Mao Zedong.

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Metacritic

100
Dec 17, 2018

A massive, imposing work of non-fiction filmmaking that demands attention despite also being the sort of artwork that doesn't really need any of our attention to be great. Like a monolith, this thing just is. It also just happens to be great, sometimes despite and sometimes because of its mega-sized breadth and scope.

Metacritic review by Simon Abrams
Simon Abrams
RogerEbert.com
100
Sep 8, 2018

Dead Souls is thoroughly focused and tightly structured. And it is an immensely perceptive piece about the history of China and its multitude of discontents.

Metacritic review by Clarence Tsui
Clarence Tsui
The Hollywood Reporter
90
Sep 8, 2018

This essential documentary is necessarily, unflinchingly grim; the cinematic equivalent of walking in the survivors’ shoes, and a complex, challenging but crucial viewing experience that burrows its immense sorrows deep into the audience’s bones.

Sarah Ward
Screen Daily