Chinese director Tsai says Venice film "Stray Dogs" could be last

By Michael Roddy

VENICE (Reuters) - Taipei-based director Tsai Ming-liang said on Thursday at the Venice Film Festival, where his "Stray Dogs" is in competition, that the portrayal of a family subsisting on the streets of the Taiwanese capital could well be his last movie.

In the production notes, the director says he has become tired of cinema and that the mechanisms of the market, the "so-called entertainment value of films in recent years and the constant pandering to popular taste", disgust him.

"I hope this is my last film. This statement is for real, that is my hope," Tsai, 55, said at a news conference before the official premiere of the film.

He also says in the notes that during the making of the film, which is called "Jiaoyou" in Chinese, he was struck by an unspecified illness that made him feel "sick enough that I felt I might die at any moment".

Tsai said that while "Stray Dogs" could well be his final film, he could not predict what would happen.

"I also believe in fate and destiny so I don't know what awaits me," he said in Venice.

"Stray Dogs" shows a father and his two children struggling to survive on what he makes from menial jobs and by getting his son and daughter to visit supermarkets to eat food samples.

The slow-paced effort is the director's first since his Cannes competition entry "Face" four years ago. His second feature film, "Vive L'Amour", won the Golden Lion best picture award in Venice in 1994.

Tsai said he probably wouldn't have made "Stray Dogs" had it not been for a theatre performance of Lee Hsiao-kang, his go-to actor for more than two decades.

His leading man, meanwhile, described their collaboration as a form of torture.

"Making films with director Tsai is very tough," Lee said.

"Working with him is kind of torture, you have to endure a lot and in the process I really experience living like the character and feel the heaviness of his life. So, these roles have allowed me to improve my acting," he said.

The concluding shot of "Stray Dogs" shows the father and a woman who has befriended the outcast family standing one behind the other almost motionless and staring at a wall in a derelict building during a rainstorm for 20 minutes.

The film features Lee's nephew and niece, Tsai's godson and goddaughter, Lee Yi-cheng and Lee Yi-chieh, as the children. (Additional reporting by Hanna Rantala; Editing by Louise Ireland)

Most Viewed

  • Sunny Leone does a Zeenat Aman; wears transparent saree!
    Sunny Leone does a Zeenat Aman; wears transparent saree!

    T-series' upcoming film EK PAHELI LEELA has been creating buzz for quite some time now. …

  • When Sonam Kapoor Crashed Out On The Sets Of Prem Ratan Dhan Payo
    When Sonam Kapoor Crashed Out On The Sets Of Prem Ratan Dhan Payo

    Seems like Actress Sonam Kapoor is having her hectic schedules these days. She is been shooting in Gujarat with actor Salman Khan for their next film of Sooraj Barjatya’s Prem Ratan Dhan Payo. Take a look at the photographs of Sonam Kapoor, she just crashed out, looking so comfortable, she took a quick nap on the sets of Prem Ratan Dhan Payo. Sonam Kapoor has been attending various events and award shows and equally she is managing her shooting of her upcoming movie Prem Ratan Dhan Payo with …

  • Oops! Sonakshi Sinha Does It Again!
    Oops! Sonakshi Sinha Does It Again!

    Sonakshi Sinha never goes out looking for trouble, because trouble usually finds her. The actress broke her hand again! Sonakshi Sinha took to her Instagram account and posted a picture of her injured hand, wrapped in pink bandage. Last night, on Friday, Varun Dhawan threw a Badlapur success bash and the actress, like a good and supporting friend, made it to the party, even with her broken hand. …

  • Age gracefully, don't cover the lines: Kareena Kapoor
    Age gracefully, don't cover the lines: Kareena Kapoor

    New Delhi, Feb 27 (IANS) Bollywood's fit and fabulous Kareena Kapoor is on her way to turn 35, and she's clear about not attempting to be 22! She feels the key to ageing gracefully lies in letting the "lines" be, especially when it comes to men. I hate it when I look at somebody and know that they have tried to cover the lines," Kareena told IANS in an interview on a recent visit to the capital. Looking svelte in a golden shimmering gown, exuding a rare glow and charm, Kareena shared her …

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Dum Laga Ke Haisha
    Yahoo Movies Review: Dum Laga Ke Haisha

    Dum Laga Ke Haisha continuously makes you smile. This is a film with a big heart and you’ll also love watching this one for the kind of nostalgia it evokes. …

  • Dum Laga Ke Haisha Star Bhumi Pednekar Has Lost Weight!
    Dum Laga Ke Haisha Star Bhumi Pednekar Has Lost Weight!

    Bhumi Pednekar made her Bollywood debut opposite Ayushmann Khurrana in Dum Laga Ke Haisha doesn’t actually look even tiny bit close to her character from the movie. The reason why we didn’t see Bhumi come in front of media to interact, as her character and role in the film was kept a secret from audiences. …

  • Ab Tak Chhappan 2 Movie Review
    Ab Tak Chhappan 2 Movie Review

    AB TAK CHAPPAN 2 is an 80s plot with a 90s twist with director Aejaz Gulab trying to give it a current flavor. It doesn't work. Nana Patekar is at his blistering best... …

  • Alia Bhatt Finally Reveals Her Relationship With Sidharth Malhotra
    Alia Bhatt Finally Reveals Her Relationship With Sidharth Malhotra

    Sidharth Malhotra and Alia Bhatt are the new and much talked couple in the Bollywood. Recently at the launch of a show actor Sidharth Malhotra caught the photographer and asked him to give his camera. He started taking Alia Bhatt’s picture. On this situation during the music awards event, Alia Bhatt was questioned about the on going relationship with Sidharth as she has been spotted with him at different events and places together. …

Loading...