Zhenchen Liu
France 2007 | 10 Min. | DigiBeta

Every gen­er­a­tion has to build its own city,” Ital­ian futur­ists cheered in the 1910s. In Europe, their ideas per­ished during World War I, but in Shang­hai they are still imple­ment­ed every day. Old neigh­bour­hoods get wedged in between taller sky­scrap­ers, and as soon as these neigh­bour­hoods have dis­ap­peared from sight, they get demol­ished. Every year, some 100,000 people are forced to move to make room for the wreck­ing balls and tower cranes of the prop­er­ty devel­op­ers. UNDER CONSTRUCTION com­bines dig­i­tal­ly re-mas­tered pho­tographs with doc­u­men­tary video footage. In a flow­ing move­ment, we float right through win­dows and across walls and we watch the mis­er­able lives of the last inhab­i­tants of a dis­man­tled old dis­trict of Shang­hai. The sky­scrap­ers at the end are silent wit­ness­es to some­thing that has van­ished for­ev­er. (idfa)