• Chen Song
    • France, China
    • 2014
    • 83 min
    • European Premiere
    • Panorama
    Tens of millions of Chinese farm laborers work day and night on the various processes making up the cotton industry. They grow and harvest the cotton balls, spin them into yarn, weave fabrics and turn them into jeans. The production of cotton articles involves entire farming families. We accompany a horde of baggage-laden factory workers making the long journey in overflowing train carriages, singing happily about their tough lives. Before dawn, the uniformed cotton pickers are transported by trailer to the plantations. This film gives a face to the otherwise anonymous Chinese workers, some of whom we watch in short scenes. Among themselves they express criticism of their working conditions, the low pay and the physical strain. Small groups of factory workers go about their daily routines: eating, sleeping and working. Great friendships develop in the dormitories, and there are conversations about the future and the possibility of protest. Should they stop working and return to work the fields of their home village? Despite it all, the thought of a regular job and the hope of promotion help to keep up the spirits of the young workers.


    • 83 min
    • color
    • DCP
    • Spoken languages: Chinese
    • Subtitles in: English
    Chen Song
    Han Lei for Documentary Channel Of SMG, Michel Noll for ICTV-Solferino Images
    Executive producer
    Gan Chao, Qiming Ying
    Chen Song, Tan Jiaying, Yuan Zhe
    Axelle Schatz

    IDFA history

    European Premiere

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    IDFA history

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