Mothers
Xu Hui-Jing
2013 - 68 min - Couleur - Chine

Zhang Qing-mei is the director of Woman's Care, a birth control center in a small Chinese village. At other times the village loudspeaker would be blaring with the sung and spoken praises of Chairman Mao, but she uses it to marshal women to check their compulsory IUDs. The powers that be have announced a change to the quota and twice as many women will have to be sterilized, meaning the single child policy is now exerting an even tighter grip on the village. Those who don’t cooperate have to pay, and those who don’t pay lose their residence and schooling permits for their existing children. We follow Qing-mei and her small group of male co-workers, who include the village’s acting mayor, as they resolutely enforce the policy. They go about their task with all the more dogged determination, now that the increasing proportion of single women means the list for sterilization is shrinking. At the top of the list is Rong-rong, a teacher and mother of two sons, who has already managed to avoid undergoing this painful procedure for a few years. Shots showing the increasing pressure on Rong-rong alternate with indoor scenes in which the mayor conveys his true feelings about the work they are doing. Other interviewees include former directors of Woman’s Care, who paint a picture of the policy throughout the years.



Author-Director : Xu Hui-Jing
Photography : Xu Hui-Jing
Editing : Liao Qing-song, Huang i-Ling
Original Music : Qi Liu
Delegate Producer : EVO
Co-producer : Cnex Inc.

Distribution


Distributor : Cnex Inc.

Distinctions

2015 - Festival International du Film des Droits de l'Homme (FIFDH), Paris (France) : Hors compétition
2014 - IDFA - International Documentary Festival Amsterdam, Amsterdam (Pays-Bas) : Sélection