TAIWAN / 2004 / Taiwanese / Color / Video / 42 min
Director, Photography, Editing: Lin Chi-shou
Producer: Wang Hsiu-ching
Source: Lin Chi-shou
Two men diligently unload equipment and materials from a truck, put pipes together, and build a stage for a puppet theater. No matter how few people are in the audience, the show starts and ends as it always has. Convincingly, as if to impress it on our minds, the camera registers from a corner the dust-covered projector and film lying idle in a warehouse, and the presence of the men steadily going about their business. Quietly criss-crossing people and places with the camera onboard, giving way to cars on the farm road, the traveling puppet theater carries with it the ambience of a bygone era in Taiwan.
[Director’s Statement] At first, I just wanted to use my camera to film a gradually declining business—a traveling puppet theater—out of personal interest and a slight feeling of nostalgia.
As I waited for the car to leave every day during the filming process, I gradually realized that what I had imagined was not as interesting as I had thought. My romantic nostalgia was based on hard and serious work of the people in the film.
For me, making a film not only helps me to understand many people, but also allows me to constantly re-examine myself. I want to thank Old Master Chang, Master Chang and Sha Fong Jun’s kind help. I also want to thank Hsiu-ching, who always supported me no matter what happened. They helped me to believe in the possibilities of documentary, and I am grateful for everything that’s possible and not possible.
Born 1971 in Taiwan, Lin Chi-shou worked in many different jobs as