The Dreams of Jinsha
Part of The New York International Children's Film Festival
China, Chen Deming, 2010, 85 min.
Recommended ages: 8 to adult (subtitled)
EAST COAST PREMIERE—Five years in the making, Chen Deming's Oscar-shortlisted animated feature blends Chinese history and mythology in a time-travel, fantasy adventure—as a young boy from Beijing hurtles back in time 3,000 years to the Jinsha Kingdom and finds himself at the center of an ancient prophecy.
Entering a world of sweeping hand-drawn landscapes filled with serene rivers, spirit-filled forests, and seas of lotus blossoms, the boy Xiao Long meets a young princess riding a white lion, who escorts him to the palace of the Jinsha king. There he discovers that his arrival has been pre-ordained, and that the pendant that hangs around his neck—a gift from his father—has the power to either bring peace or unleash untold devastation upon the Kingdom and its people. Longing to return home, but also enchanted by his surroundings and newfound friends, Xiao Long faces a difficult choice between leaving the past behind, or staying and risking his life to save Jinsha. The animators clearly drew inspiration from the work of Hayao Miyazaki (Studio Ghibli fans will note references to Castle in the Sky, Nausicaa, and The Cat Returns) to create this epic but child-friendly fable about friendship, power, and self-sacrifice.