Review, Tomb Raider I: Tomb Raider I – III Remastered, 2024, Aspyr/Crystal Dynamics/Saber Games, RRP: £24.99 (Steam/PC version)

Llewella Chapman (University of East Anglia, UK)

17 February 2024


‘Made by the fans, for the fans’ very much sums up this lovingly-crafted and faithful remaster of the first three games and their accompanying expansion packs of the Tomb Raider franchise, originally developed by Core Design and published by Eidos Interactive between 1996 and 1998.

Fans of these games have been calling for them to be remastered for many years. Following the publishing takeover of the franchise by Embracer in 2022 and the commission that shortly followed, Aspyr employed fans experienced in creating their own Tomb Raider engines, renders, mods and artworks in order to achieve this, including Timur ‘XProger’ Gagiev, Yousef ‘Troye’ Shaqqouri, Michael Chaban (Arsunt), Giovanni Lucca, Konrad Majewski, Monika Erosova (Raina Audron), Ian Turner, Axel Hatté (Delca) and Jason Chester, as well as others.[1] As XProger tweeted on the day of the remaster’s release, aptly on Lara Croft’s fictional birthday:

I am grateful for the heads of @SaberGames for trusting me to lead the project and assemble a dream team of true fans … From the beginning, we had complete freedom and set ourselves an impossible goal, which could only be approached by a small ‘Development Team’ of crazy people, ready to work 24/7 [over the] next year with an absolute vision of what and for whom we [were] doing. Thanks to all the original developers and community, we eagerly read ALL your comments, interviews, reviews and reactions. The responsibility to all of you was higher than the fear of deadlines and the insane amount of work.

(Twitter, 14 February 2024, 10.20pm, https://twitter.com/XProger_san/status/1757892574092636206)

 

Besides XProger’s tweet thread acknowledging fan involvement in the remastered games, the admission of working ‘24/7’ and the ‘insane’ amount of work over the period of a year echoes the pressures of the small development team who originally worked on Tomb Raider (1996). This included crunch and tight deadlines, leading to the high levels of exhaustion that some of the original team experienced, which have often been overlooked when discussing and celebrating the ingenuity of what made this game, and its subsequent sequels, remake and now a remaster, special and appreciated by many.

It is with this understanding that I review the remaster of Tomb Raider. This will be followed by further reviews of Tomb Raider II (originally released in 1997) and Tomb Raider III (originally released in 1998). In some ways, it is difficult to review the first game, owing to my familiarity with it and its ‘tank controls’, although this has also helped me to make a comparison between how the original was/is played, versus what is offered by its remastered version.

‘Take a look at this, Lara’: The design

The remastered Lara model is certainly a beauty; it is clear that this is one of the elements that has received a lot of time and investment, and it shows. Lara (designed for the original game by Toby Gard) now retains the same model in all three remastered games (Figure 1). The model, designed by Konrad Majewski, was inspired by the three games FMVs, and in the first game Lara now also wears her hair in the bubble braid style. The hair extension doesn’t always work; at points it flicks over her backpack in an awkward way, at other times, it thins out and sometimes passes through her body, which was one of the reasons the original development team removed the unruly braid from Tomb Raider in the first place. But, nonetheless, the model has been beautifully rendered, and no longer does Lara need to source her bras from Jean Paul Gaultier.

Figure 1

On reviewing the original game’s levels in 1996, Charlie Brooker praised ‘now, thanks to Core Design, it’s possible to be an explorer without leaving your seat … Tomb Raider’s environment is utterly believable. Architecturally, it’s often stunning … some of the architecture is prettier than Lara herself’ (emphasis in original, PC Zone, December 1996: 75, 78). Many of these textures and environments have been respectfully and creatively upscaled, in keeping with the look and feel of playing the originals, with a few, rather lovely, environment additions. For example, in ‘The Cistern’, there are now puddles of reflective water on floor tiles, as well as dripping water that falls from the ceiling. When you kill Egyptian mummies and Atlantean enemies in the later levels of the game, they not only explode beside Lara, but also form a cloud of blood around her (Figure 2), enhancing the experience of being in the environment as a whole – something that the original version achieved so admirably in 1996, and has been wonderfully captured and updated in the remastered version.

Figure 2

Admittedly, I believe that some of the upgraded (and AI-upscaled) textures do not quite work, particularly in the ‘Atlantis’ and ‘Great Pyramid’ levels. In the original Tomb Raider, the textures, attributed to Heather Gibson, and atmosphere and design, attributed to Neal Boyd, always reminded me somewhat of Alien (1979) – very much a return to the womb – and the ‘body horror’ genre of films such as The Fly (1986). Whereas the textures for these levels as they appear in the remaster are somewhat cartoonish in their renders (Figure 3), removing the feeling of pulsating claustrophobia and fascinating grossness, which the originals levels captured so well in 1996. The FMVs, too, are probably the least restored of the remasters, likely owing lack of original sources, budget and time constraints, and merely offer AI-upscaled versions as there was little that could be done with the low-resolution originals.

Figure 3

A more troublesome issue is that owing to the upscaled textures and change to lighting (many areas appear darker than in the original), this means that the items to be collected – keys, medipacks, ammunition, etc. – are sometimes difficult, and at points near impossible, to spot, which will likely cause frustration to new players unfamiliar with Tomb Raider.

However, there are some wonderful upscaled textures, artistic renders and lighting to be admired when playing through the training and game levels. Who knew Lara owned such a prestigious collection of artworks in her manor (to the point where she owns four – presumably original and subsequent copies – of Girl with the Pearl Earring, Johannes Vermeer, 1665)? It’s an art historian’s dream. I also enjoyed travelling through Greece, where much was to be appreciated regarding the male form (Figure 4), including a humourous placement of key slot and tile (Figure 5), and some beautiful, evocative lighting (Figures 6 and 7).

Figure 4

Figure 5

Figure 6

Figure 7

‘A kind of evolution on steroids’: Camera movement

An apocryphal story, once read and never, unfortunately, forgotten, is that there was once a fan-created ‘guide’ to advise players where best to view Lara’s posterior captured by different camera angles. Not any more in these remasters (unless you toggle the key to flit between the original and remastered graphics)! The removal of the ‘bottom line’ means that no longer does the camera at times caress Lara’s backside, but rather, directs us to admire other elements instead. The difference in camera position and angles, however, does mean that this changes how the game is played in some ways. At times, I found the camera position a little irritating, and needed to switch to the original graphics, but ultimately it didn’t detract from my overall enjoyment of the gameplay. Although for new players, I suspect the camera may cause frustration at points, especially when combined with the unfamiliar control system.

‘No!’: Attempting to control Lara

As part of the remaster, players can now switch between ‘tank’ (original) and ‘modern’ (remastered) controls whenever they so choose. The new controls are based on those implemented by Crystal Dynamics for Tomb Raider: Legend (2006), Anniversary (2007) and Underworld (2008).[2] So how ‘modern’ these controls actually are by 2024 standards remains to be seen.

For those unfamiliar with the mechanics of the original games, the way Tomb Raider was programmed by Paul Douglas and Gavin Rummery led to a grid system that players navigated with tank controls to make, sometimes often precise, movements to explore the 3D level terrains. As most other reviewers of the remasters have found, these controls not only offer a factor of nostalgia for those who played the originals, but you are also left wondering how new players will react to this control system.

In terms of the ‘modern’ controls, they are generally fine when using it for combat situations or exploring open areas, however not so much when you need to make that precise jump and grab to reach a ledge there, or that flip backwards when landing on an exact spot to reach a secret area here. Basically, the modern controls have difficulty connecting to the very grid system the original game was built upon, and I found that at points the camera angles offered when using ‘modern’ rather than ‘tank’ controls were problematic. This is not helped by the inability to perform certain moves in order to achieve certain feats, such as ‘side’ and ‘back step’ being unavailable, and that ‘side’ and ‘back’ flips only work when guns are drawn. I believe that either control system is where it will make or break playing the game for newcomers to these games in particular.

‘Say Cheese!’: The additions

Additions to the remaster, besides being able to choose between original and remastered graphics as well as control systems, include a ‘photo mode’, now a mainstream inclusion among newly-released games. I attempted to use the photo mode for the purposes of this review, which led to Figure 8, but other than for my own gratuitous fun, it didn’t really do anything to enhance my overall experience of the game. Photo mode is more likely to be enjoyed by players wishing to share their ‘favourite’ or ‘comical’ captures on social media, and as is common in gaming nowadays, to assist in the marketing of the game.

Figure 8

Achievements and trophies to be collected have also been added, as with other remastered games, and the inclusion of these is a requirement of Sony and Xbox. Again, this feature isn’t really aimed at gamers such as myself: back in 1996 it was an ‘achievement’ in itself to finish the game without the need to receive a notification for completing it. But I think that they nicely capture the inherent wit and humour afforded in the original games, such as ‘Like Dorothy’, which is a cheeky reference to the inspiration of The Wizard of Oz (1939) behind the level cheat codes used in the original games. Although these features don’t appeal to me personally, I understand that for some fans and new players to these games that these will enhance their gameplaying experience.

Summary

From the outset, it is clear that despite time constraints, the sheer amount of work needed to realise the remaster project as a whole, and possibly, I suspect, budgetary ones too, Tomb Raider I (as it has been classified so as to differentiate itself within the group of games offered in the remaster) is a labour of love for those involved in its development. While I believe that it is Tomb Raider fans and game historians who will get the most pleasure out of this game/project as a whole, owing to their desire to play these games, whereas the control systems/camera angles may be off-putting for new players, I think that the remaster of the first game is an admirable achievement. For all three games, and their expansion packs, to be so lovingly restored and available on a variety of consoles, at an extraordinarily reasonable price too, is to be celebrated. Vivat Lara! I don’t think we’ve ever seen enough…

A copy of Tomb Raider I-III Remastered was provided for review by Crystal Dynamics/Aspyr.


Notes

[1] With huge thanks to Alex, webmaster of core-design.com, for helping me to identify some of the fans involved in the remasters of Tomb Raider.

[2] As confirmed by Aspyr (8 February 2024): https://support.aspyr.com/hc/en-us/articles/23948827137549-Modern-Controls-Overview-Tomb-Raider-I-III-Remastered


Llewella Chapman is a visiting scholar based at the University of East Anglia, UK. Her research interests include film and video game history, gender and costume. Her first monograph, Fashioning James Bond: Costume, Gender and Identity in the World of 007 was published by Bloomsbury in 2022. She has also published an article on the work of Vicky Arnold (script writer) and Heather Gibson (level designer) for the early Tomb Raider franchise in the journal Feminist Media Studies (2023), DOI: 10.1080/14680777.2023.2217346.


Disclaimer: The IAMHIST Blog is a platform that offers individual scholars the opportunity to present their work and thoughts. They alone are responsible for the content, which does not represent the view of the IAMHIST council or other IAMHIST members.

“Researching Cinema in the First World War” Workshop Report, 25 August 2023, Maynooth University, Ireland

Alan Corley

30 November 2023


Throughout my academic journey, I have largely relied on the writings of others, searching through books and articles in search of details and perspectives that could help me approach whatever my research. My biggest challenge has been independent research as I found it difficult to know where to look for potential sources. My current research examines the cinema-going experience in Ireland during the 1910s and 1920s, with a focus on what sort of films were shown to audiences and how they responded to them. Naturally, the First World War affected the distribution of film across Europe, and so I was interested in this time period especially. When I heard about this workshop, it sounded ideal. I can definitely say I came away from this workshop far more confident in my knowledge of available resources and my ability to use them.

The event was sponsored by the International Association for Media and History (IAMHIST) through the IAMHIST Challenge awarded to Dr. Veronica Johnson (Maynooth University), and hosted by the Media Studies department at Maynooth University, with presentations by Dr. Denis Condon (Maynooth University), Kasandra O’Connell (Irish Film Institute), and Dr. Johnson.

The focus of the workshop was on efforts to research and study cinema during the First World War. Given the delicate and fragile nature of material items of this time, much has been lost in the century since; many films have been lost due to decay, purposeful destruction, and/or negligence, while paper material was seen as discardable ephemera. These facts can make it extremely difficult to research early cinema – and with the added element of global warfare, information from the time can be hard to come by. This workshop was designed to showcase what is available and how to go about accessing it, from online resources to physical documents held in libraries and archives.

Dr. Condon, author of Early Irish Cinema: 1895-1921, opened the presentation portion of the day with his talk: “Researching Newspaper Archives”. He began by discussing how the film industry was disrupted by the war, moving on to the benefits of using archival newspapers, which he called the best way of researching this time in history as most information was spread in this format. Newspaper articles, advertisements, reviews, etc., can all show the cinema’s relationship to the Irish public and vice versa. He encouraged researchers to look outside of purely digital sources and pursue analog material with the same energy, going into detail about the microfiche holdings of the National Library in Dublin. Dr. Condon also spoke about the travelling nature of early film screenings, with groups bringing films to rural areas in an evolution of the travelling theatre groups of earlier times, with the films themselves being the main attraction.

Kasandra O’Connell followed with a presentation on “Using Film Archives,” detailing the holdings of the Irish Film Institute and the Irish Film Archive, explaining some of the IFI’s early history and how it began to build up its collection of film and ephemera. One of the things I found most interesting in her talk was the relationship the IFI has with donors and owners of film material, and the legal rights surrounding this material. Despite little indigenous film production in Ireland until relatively recently, the archive currently houses over 30,000 cans of film, with much work being put into making as much material public as possible, through the IFI Player and a variety of other access routes. I have previously viewed the O’Kalem and 1916 Collections of the IFI Player and it was extremely interesting to hear how one can go about contacting the access officer for access to other material.

Dr. Johnson closed the presentations with her talk on “Using Multiple Resources,” highlighting how researchers have to utilise all available sources as well as consider alternative routes. She spoke about her research into the Film Company of Ireland, the first indigenous narrative film company in Ireland, about which little has been written, which I found to be a fascinating topic (I had only been familiar with Irish Destiny (1926) prior to this). Providing an extensive list of journals, archives, and online libraries, including a large number of resources available to researchers that I had not come across before: Early Popular Visual Culture, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, the Media History Digital Library, and also pointed to Ancestry.com as a potentially useful resource. Dr. Condon and Dr. Johnson’s presentations taken together provided a vast and helpful education around both availability and the varying formats worth exploring. There are numerous online newspaper archives that have been digitized from original paper prints and can be searched digitally, research groups that freely share their findings for others to read and build upon, physical holdings in universities and libraries, microfiche copies of documents that have not been digitized due to time and expense limitations but are available to search through.

Following the talks, there was an hour-long workshop, during which attendees could share their research projects with the speakers and fellow attendees and receive feedback and advice. Much of my study, when I was working towards my Masters, was in the German film industry, with my dissertation being on the portrayal of gender and sexuality in the films of F.W. Murnau, which I am hoping to expand to book length. Since then, I have decided to look into the cinema-going experience closer to home, finding out what sort of films were imported into Ireland during the silent era, what films proved successful, or how audiences of the time responded to them. Were certain genres more appealing to the Irish people en masse, and were there themes or concepts that drew them in more so than others? I enjoyed hearing feedback from the speakers and my fellow attendees and was fascinated by their own topics and what drew them to researching them.

After lunch, the group moved to the Irish Film Archive, housed a few minutes away on the Maynooth University campus, for a tour of its facilities. I must admit that this was what initially caught my eye about this workshop. Film preservation and restoration have long been a source of fascination and passion for me and I was eager to see the inside workings of a professional film archive. It was staggering to see the volume of film cans and I spent some time seeking out titles I was familiar with (such as Neil Jordan’s The Company of Wolves (1984), a personal favourite).

Tour of the Irish Film Archive (Maynooth University)

Before breaking for the day, we returned to the workshop room to view an extract from an early Irish film, Knocknagow, directed by Fred O’Donovan in 1918. Produced by the Film Company of Ireland, it is the oldest surviving Irish-made film to be produced in Ireland. I found the extract fascinating and thought its use of on-location shooting in Tipperary an excellent way to boost its production value. One of the charms of the silent era, from my perspective, is the immediacy of the film itself, almost functioning as a direct connection to a place and time in a way that I don’t particularly feel in other eras of film history. Despite being set in the 1870s, it is a window into the landscape of Ireland in the 1910s and I think it is well worth a watch.

I found this workshop to be massively beneficial and thanks to it I feel more confident in my research abilities, and more familiar with the material available to me. Beyond my research into the Irish cinema-going experience, I have used the resources mentioned by the speakers to build up my knowledge of my main areas of interest and use that to build up my regular articles and writings. I want to thank the organisers for setting this up, creating an easy and welcoming atmosphere, and for presenting myself and my fellow attendees with a wealth of information in such a great way.


Alan Corley holds an M.Phil. in the Theory, History, and Practice of Film Studies from Trinity College, Dublin. His interests include the silent film era, the development of film as an art form, social contexts of horror films, and film preservation. He currently writes for the FanFare publication on Medium, where he explores a variety of films through aesthetic, historical, and critical lenses (https://alancorley.medium.com/).


Disclaimer: The IAMHIST Blog is a platform that offers individual scholars the opportunity to present their work and thoughts. They alone are responsible for the content, which does not represent the view of the IAMHIST council or other IAMHIST members.

New Year Films in Spring Festival: Documenting and Reviewing Life

Qi AI (Journalism and Communication School, Shandong University, China)

23 November 2023


During Spring Festival, going to the cinema for New Year comedies has become a consumption habit and part of the holiday ritual for many Chinese. New Year films are made to screen around the New Year holiday season and cater to the joyfully festive atmosphere. They depict the social changes happening in China over the past year.

Initially, in the 1920s, there were no strict genre requirements upon the films released in this season. The release was a marketing choice given China’s traditional year-end consumption of entertainment. The season was then flooded with both imported films like Monkey Business (dir. Norman Z. McLeod, 1931) and domestic ones like Between Tears and Laughter (Ti xiao yin yuan, dir. Zhang Shichuan, 1932). The resulting increase in seasonal competition led Chinese filmmakers to associate their filmmaking with the festival. Their works self-reflexively involved Lunar New Year celebration rituals and elements, from writing Spring Festival couplets and lighting firecrackers to preparing family reunion dinner and greeting relatives and friends.

A case in point is the 1937 film New Year’s Coin (Ya sui qian, dir. Zhang Shichuan). Made by Mingxin Film Company, the film describes a journey of one silver dollar, a girl’s luck money given by her grandparents on New Year’s Eve, passing from hand to hand. In Hong Kong, a Cantonese-language New Year comedy was released in the same year. Directed by Tang Xiaodan, the film Bloom and Prosper (Hua kai fu gui) tells a story of a family recovering the lottery they lost on New Year’s Eve, which is interwoven with a romance between a young man and woman.

Figure 1: The opening scene of ‘Happy New Year’ in New Year’s Coin, 1937

The Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945) discontinued the production of films of this category. The subsequent Chinese Civil War (1946-1949) continued the situation. From the 1950s, propaganda films had become mainstream in both Mainland China and Taiwan in a long time as the two sides had the demand for ideological consolidation. By comparison, the film category gained development within the Hong Kong film industry partly because of Chinese inhabitants’ nostalgic longing for home and the motherland. Regarding the mainland, similar films did not appear until the turn of the 1990s. Later, Feng Xiaogang’s works outshined others and became the most popular mainland version of the New Year films.

Both Hong Kong filmmakers and their mainland counterparts prefer the genre of comedy when making New Year films. Along with the mainland film industry’s development, more and more films were chosen to exhibit in this commercially viable season. This preference for comedy became less pronounced. For most of the films, what remains is their direct projection of situations of the societies of the time.

Hong Kong New Year films of the 1960s address Hong Kongers’ diasporic mentality and a collective homesickness pervading their society. The films’ themes usually revolve around homecoming, marriage and settlement. June Bride (Liu yue xin niang, dir. Tang Huang, 1960) and A Spring Celebration of the Swallow’s Return (Chun man hua kai yanzi gui, dir. Mok Hong-si, 1966), for instance, follow Chinese sojourners who desire to return home but fail and put down roots in Hong Kong.[i] Certain new features presented themselves in the 1980s. Hong Kong New Year films developed into comedy franchises. Clifton Ko Chi-Sum’s It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World series (Fu gui bi ren, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1992) is a compelling case. Topics such as lottery and emigration to Canada are repeatedly represented in the series. They are given concurrent meanings, namely, being rich and the worry of the 1997 handover, which correspond to Hong Kongers’ common concerns of the time.

Figure 2: The scene of winning lottery in It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World, 1987

These concerns were even more evident in the comedies made in the 1990s as the deadline was approaching. The Stephen Chow vehicle film Fight Back to School 3 (Tao xue wei long, dir. Wong Jing, 1993) explicitly mentions the time point and captures many Hong Kong rich people’s distrust of the mainland. In another film starring him, All’s Well, Ends Well 97 (Jia you xi shi 97, dir. Alfred Cheung Kin-ting, 1997), a new character, a Beijing girl (played by Jacklyn Wu), appears and eventually becomes a member of the film’s Hong Kong family as the future daughter-in-law. Several misunderstandings and conflicts occur between the girl and the family. But the comedy ends with a grand celebration for the reopening of the girl’s restaurant in Hong Kong. Such reunion captures the indigenous people’s complex emotions regarding Hong Kong’s return to China.

Figure 3: The scene of writing Spring Festival couplets (the Chinese characters highlight the film’s celebration for the upcoming year of 1993, the year of the rooster in traditional Chinese culture) in Fight Back to School 3, 1993

Coincidentally in the early 1990s, there were also some mainland films set around and released in the Spring Festival holiday season. Yet, both mainland filmmakers and audiences did not call them New Year films at that time. Huang Jianzhong’s The Spring Festival (Guo nian, 1991), for instance, directly borrowed the name of the holiday but also was released three days before the Chinese New Year Day. It describes a series of family conflicts around money between parents and their adult children that finally culminate at their homecoming dinner. The conflicts highlight the social changes under the country’s concurrent economic reform.

Since 1994, Hong Kong New Year films have entered the mainland market under the import quota system the government initiated in the same year. Following this wave, mainland filmmakers produced their version of New Year film on the basis of their previous filmmaking related to the holiday. A batch of New Year comedies, typified by Feng’s films, sprung up.

Similarly, these films address contemporaneous social issues and widely held concerns, a series of problems caused by the country’s social transformations of the day. For example, the film A Tree in House (Mei shier tou zhe le, dir. Yang Yazhou, 1999) reflects the housing problem in Tianjing. Beautiful House (Mei li de jia, dir. An Zhanjun, 2000) concerns laid-off workers’ reemployment and their children’s schooling problems. Thanks to his continuous production, Feng’s New Year comedies clearly exhibit the social changes happening each year and popular concerns such as the massive wave of layoffs in state-owned enterprises (Dream Factory/Jia fang yi fang, 1997), going-abroad fever (Be There or Be Square/Bu jian bu san, 1998), labour disputes (Sorry Baby/Mei wan mei liao, 1999), WTO challenges (Big Shot’s Funeral/Da wan, 2001), the ethics of technology and extramarital affairs (Cell Phone/Shou ji, 2003), rural migrant workers and issues of conscience (A World Without Thieves/Tian xia wu zei, 2004), and marriage trends in China (If You Are The One/Fei cheng wu rao, 2008). The last film unprecedentedly touches upon the subject of homosexuality.

Figure 4: The opening scene of a cartoon tiger (which highlights the film’s celebration for the upcoming year of 1998, the year of the tiger in traditional Chinese culture) in Party A, Party B, 1997.

Representing these hot topics leads mainland New Year films to become visual summaries of annual changes in China, thereby reinforcing the association between the festival and the film category. It builds audience expectation, which has developed into a consumption habit. The lasting expectation fuels the popularity of mainland New Year films over the years and up to the present day.

Recent mainland New Year films still deal with annual hot topics, albeit in a limited number. Some of them are road trip comedies, such as Lost in Thailand (Tai jiong, dir. Xu Zheng, 2012) and Lost in Russia (Ma jiong, dir. Xu Zheng, 2020) which describe stories of Chinese outbound tourism and reflect the rise of the country’s economy. Some of them are tailored to the current patriotic sentiment of Chinese people, such as the forthcoming war film The Battle at Lake Changjin 2 (Changjing hu zhi Shuimen qiao, dir. Chen Kaige, Tsui Hark and Dante Lam Chiu-Yin, 2022).

A diversification of genres suggests that the mainland New Year film has become a film category for the season. Comedy is just one of the options. Moreover, mainland New Year comedies have evolved into stories of nostalgic romance or dream-seeking, for example, films starring Shen Teng such as Crazy Alien (Feng kuang wai xing ren, dir. Ning Hao, 2019), Pegasus (Fei chi ren sheng, dir. Han Han, 2019) and Hi, Mom (Ni hao, Li Huanying, dir. Jia Ling, 2021). Such films indulge the mentality of the post-80s and post-90s generations. These Chinese, born in the 1980s and 1990s respectively, have become the major drivers of film consumption. So, are the filmmaking intentions and outcomes of these films also a document record and review of life?


[i] Fiona Yuk-Wa Law, “Timely festivity: Chinese New Year films (hesui pian) in the 1950s-1960s,” Journal of Chinese Cinemas 4, no.2 (2010), 105-126.


Qi AI is a postdoctoral fellow in media and communication studies at the School of Journalism and Communication, Shandong University, China, where he is the associate director of Research Center for Culture, Art and Communication of Film and Teleplay. He is a visiting scholar at the School of International Communications of the University of Nottingham (Ningbo) and also a member of Shandong Film Association. He holds a Ph.D. in film and television studies from the University of Nottingham, UK. His research interests primarily include genre and stardom studies, film industries and regulation, and film festivals.


Disclaimer: The IAMHIST Blog is a platform that offers individual scholars the opportunity to present their work and thoughts. They alone are responsible for the content, which does not represent the view of the IAMHIST council or other IAMHIST members.

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