Su Beng, the Revolutionist

Lih-Kuei Chen

Lih-Kuei Chen

Taiwanese Film Director

Throughout his life, Su Beng has been active across four continents, fighting against three regimes. Some say he is a Don Quixote, dreaming of what is impossible, or a Che Guevara, as an active revolutionary in East Asia. In private, however, he most admired the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. His whole life was spent on the run. He once joined underground Communist organizations involved in anti-Japanese activities. Soon after he returned to Taiwan in 1949, he set up an armed insurrection to assassinate Chiang Kai-shek, but failed. Later he fled to Japan, living in exile for 41 years. During this period, he completed Taiwan’s 400 Year History, and continued to bring armed revolution and democratic enlightenment to Taiwan. 97 years old in this film, blind in one eye, and with a hunched figure, he was still full of fighting spirit, as his legend continues…

About The Artist

Lih-Kuei Chen graduated from the Department of Foreign Languages at National Taiwan University in 1979, and has a Master’s degree in audio-visual education from the University of Texas at Austin. While studying abroad and working as a newspaper reporter, she began to realize the meaning of social justice. She started to make acquaintances with many participants in the democratic movement, forming a Taiwanese consciousness. Lih-Kuei Chen happened to watch a documentary on labour disputes, and heard the quote, “The true spirit of documentaries is to speak up for the disadvantaged.” This idea had a lasting impression on her; she decided to make documentaries as a way of contributing to Taiwan’s social movements. From 1989 onwards, the contents of her documentaries have expanded to include environmental conservation, democratic resistance, and gender equality. Through the last twenty years of relentless filmmaking, Lih-Kuei Chen has arrived at this motto: “Witness Taiwan through documentaries / Contribute to society through action / Demonstrate the glory of arts and culture.”

Lih-Kuei Chen

Lih-Kuei Chen

Taiwanese Film Director

Throughout his life, Su Beng has been active across four continents, fighting against three regimes. Some say he is a Don Quixote, dreaming of what is impossible, or a Che Guevara, as an active revolutionary in East Asia. In private, however, he most admired the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. His whole life was spent on the run. He once joined underground Communist organizations involved in anti-Japanese activities. Soon after he returned to Taiwan in 1949, he set up an armed insurrection to assassinate Chiang Kai-shek, but failed. Later he fled to Japan, living in exile for 41 years. During this period, he completed Taiwan’s 400 Year History, and continued to bring armed revolution and democratic enlightenment to Taiwan. 97 years old in this film, blind in one eye, and with a hunched figure, he was still full of fighting spirit, as his legend continues…

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Lih-Kuei Chen graduated from the Department of Foreign Languages at National Taiwan University in 1979, and has a Master’s degree in audio-visual education from the University of Texas at Austin. While studying abroad and working as a newspaper reporter, she began to realize the meaning of social justice. She started to make acquaintances with many participants in the democratic movement, forming a Taiwanese consciousness. Lih-Kuei Chen happened to watch a documentary on labour disputes, and heard the quote, “The true spirit of documentaries is to speak up for the disadvantaged.” This idea had a lasting impression on her; she decided to make documentaries as a way of contributing to Taiwan’s social movements. From 1989 onwards, the contents of her documentaries have expanded to include environmental conservation, democratic resistance, and gender equality. Through the last twenty years of relentless filmmaking, Lih-Kuei Chen has arrived at this motto: “Witness Taiwan through documentaries / Contribute to society through action / Demonstrate the glory of arts and culture.”

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