Documentary Competition
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Documentary Feature | USA | 2021 | Mandarin | 97 minutes

Following her Best Documentary win at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, alumni filmmaker Jessica Kingdon (COMMODITY CITY) returns to HIFF with an immersive examination of the often paradoxical pursuit of wealth and progress in contemporary China. In a series of vignettes loosely structured around the distinct social and economic classes that divide the nation, Kingdon follows factory workers, middle class consumers, and carefree elites as they chase the ever elusive “Chinese Dream.” With sharp observations, sensory visuals, and a hypnotic score by Dan Deacon, ASCENSION solidifies Kingdon’s place as one of the rising stars of vérité cinema.