Chinese photographer Weicheng Hua meets the vagabond Zhighuo Sun in 2015 at an amusement park just outside Chongqing. Hua’s first film is an affectionate portrait of the drug-using, possibly psychotic, sensitive and always cheerful Sun, who moves through the amusement park like a kind of shaman, holding forth about mystical concepts such as “the principle of zero” and “understanding the self.” The central figure seems to fit perfectly into this odd environment.
The Foreigners’ Street amusement park, which opened in 2006, was a surreal mishmash of peculiar structures, ranging from UFOs to a mini-Manhattan, a revolving Jesus statue and a Thai brothel. Both depressing and hopeful at the same time, the chaotic, ugly park was also a sanctuary for outsiders.
Foreigners’ Street was demolished after 13 years to make way for a luxury residential area. The film is therefore also about rapid urbanization in China. Hua invites you to see the world from a different perspective. When all the mess has been knocked down and cleared up, what space is left for the divergent?