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Mao by Mao

France, 1976 (MIFF 1977)

Director: René Vienet

This autobiography of Mao Tse Tung is a compilation of rare and hitherto unknown film material that presents an unusual portrait of the Chinese leader.

The commentary is composed exclusively of private thoughts, texts, and speeches of Mao that come from documents unpublished outside China and were gathered during the Cultural Revolution.

The film includes the first shots in which Mao appeared at the end of the Long March, in Yenan, and unique pictures of the victory parade in Shanghai, filmed by Henri Cartier-Bresson.

In his comments, Mao talks freely, sometimes cynically, sometimes ironically, remembering his old friends, bitterly recalling his mistakes and defeats and giving his own version of the history of Chinese Communism.

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© Melbourne International Film Festival 2013.

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