TEASER - 26: Rebels of the Neon God (with Ruairí McCann)


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Our first international guest, Belfast-based film critic and editor Ruairí McCann, joins the podcast to discuss the great Taiwanese filmmaker Tsai Ming-liang and his auspicious first feature, 1992’s Rebels of the Neon God, a film that took 23 years to get a North American release.

Rebels of the Neon God set the tone for Tsai Ming-liang's singular film career: his exploration of urban loneliness, the use of public and private spaces, and the beginning of his career-spanning work with actor Lee Kang-sheng, who was a teenager in this film and whose aging process into middle-age Tsai has been chronicling over the course of their partnership, in this most extraordinary ongoing collaboration between actor and director.

Ruairí and I discuss the evolution of Tsai as a filmmaker, his place within the Taiwanese New Wave (and his personal relationship with the legacy of the French New Wave), and I also talk with Ruairí about the recent riots that have been raging in Belfast, and how life in Northern Ireland has been during the pandemic.

Follow Ruairí McCann on Twitter.

Ruairí has a lot on the go these days:

- Ultra Dogme, a film and music criticism website where he’s managing editor

- photogénie, a Belgium-based, internationally-run film periodical where he’s contributing editor

- Electric Ghost Magazine, a film essay and review website based in London, where he’s a staff critic and contributing editor

Ruairí’s recent piece on Tsai Ming-liang's recent film Days, for Ultra Dogme.

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