Tuesday 20 June at 7pm
The Elizabeth Picture Theatre
Queens of the Qing Dynasty, Ashley McKenzie, 2022, 122m
A suicidal teen, Star develops a candid rapport with An, a student from Shanghai assigned to watch her in hospital. A nightly exchange of secrets, text messages and possessions quickly expand the boundaries of their relationship and alters their inner chemistry.
Ashley McKenzie is regional artist in the best possible sense. Grounded in the space and circumstances of Nova Scotia and Cape Breton, McKenzie’s films are character studies that draw on a deep knowledge of her characters lives, their environment and the accumulative social pressure that shapes them. Yet McKenzie’s Queens of the Qing Dynasty avoids the typical gestures of realism, instead trapping us within a radical intimacy, with Star and An, through startling close-ups, and a sound design that merges score and sound effects into subjectivity.
With thanks to Ashley McKenzie