Ascension - Masterclass with Jessica Kingdon
Join us for a Masterclass with director Jessica Kingdon in conversation with SDI Director, Noe Mendelle, about the Oscar-nominated Ascension.
By RSVPing to this event, you will receive a link to watch the film and the Zoom details to join us on the day.
ASCENSION is an impressionistic portrait of China’s industrial supply chain that reveals the country’s growing class divide through staggering observations of labor, consumerism and wealth. The documentary portrays capitalism in China across the levels of its operation, from the crudest mine to the most rarefied forms of leisure. Accordingly, the film is structured in three parts, ascending through the levels of the capitalist structure: workers running factory production, the middle class training for and selling to aspirational consumers, and the elites reveling in a new level of hedonistic enjoyment. In traveling up the rungs of China’s social ladder, we see how each level supports and makes possible the next while recognizing the contemporary "Chinese Dream" remains an elusive fantasy for most.
'It’s a fascinating film about China that has universal things to say about income inequality and aspiration everywhere: how we’re all sold a dream that’s out of the reach of most.' - The Guardian
'Like its documentary predecessors, Ascension finds aesthetic allure and fodder for debate in the complex symphony of industrialism and the people functioning within its order and disorder.' - Hollywood Reporter
Jessica Kingdon is a Chinese-American director/producer named one of “25 New Faces of Independent Film” by Filmmaker Magazine and selected for the 2020 DOC NYC “40 Under 40” list. Her first documentary feature, ASCENSION登楼叹 (2021), won awards for Best Documentary at the Tribeca Festival and Hamptons International Film Festival as well as Best Editing at DOC NYC. The film has received nominations from the Spirit Awards, the Gotham and the International Documentary Association along with five Cinema Eye nominations and six Critic’s Choice nominations. Her award-winning short COMMODITY CITY (2017) is an observational documentary about the world’s largest wholesale mall in Yiwu, China and played at over 50 film festivals. She co-directed the short IT'S COMING! (2020), and ROUTINE ISLAND (2019). Her work has been supported by organizations including SFFILM, Chicken & Egg, Cinereach, Sundance, Field of Vision, and Firelight Media. Jessica has served in producorial roles on Tania Cypriano’s BORN TO BE (NYFF 2019), Nathan Truesdell’s THE WATER SLIDE (True/False 2018), and Johnny Ma’s OLD STONE (Berlinale 2016). She is a member of the Brooklyn Filmmakers Collective and Brown Girls Doc Mafia.
17 March 2022, 02.00PM - 04.00PM