A young worker at a Christmas decorations factory in China learns to find hope, even in the most hard-scrabble of circumstances, carving out a new opportunity for herself.
Director Corrie Chen is based in Australia, but headed to China with only a cinematographer and camera to make this excellent dramatic short.
Working with non-actors sourced from the local area they shot in, they also gained access to a real-life factory — and during the busiest time of the year — through luck, gumption and ingenious detective work.
Sharp, observant documentary-style camerawork captures the milieu’s strange, peculiar mix of beauty and industry, and the performances are understated yet sensitive.
“Tinseltown” therefore offers a valuable, authentic window into an often misunderstood aspect of modern China. By portraying the hopes and dreams of a young woman hoping to elevate herself economically, the film puts us in the shoes of an often faceless “other” with insight, compassion and sensitivity.