Under Goddesses' Shelter

The documentary depicts the life of Liu Yunxiang, an 80-year-old nun, living in the rural abstinence hall in Meizhou, Guangdong Province, where Hakka people clusters. By recording the one year’s daily life of Liu Yunxiang, during which she witnessed the abstinence hall collapsing and reconstruction, the documentary tries to disclose her religious faith and her social interaction as a nun living the single life all her life, revealing the traditions and religious faith in the region, as well as how Hakka women struggle to get their freedom through religious practice. Through an oral history of hers, the documentary tries to show the fate of Hakka women in history, their strong power of life, rich spiritual world and the attitude about death and loneliness.

  • Yufei Yang
    Director
  • Yufei Yang
    Writer
  • Jianjun Lei
    Producer
  • Yunxiang Liu
    Key Cast
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    姑婆
  • Film Type:
    Documentary
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 32 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    July 5, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    1,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    China
  • Country of Filming:
    China
  • Film Language:
    Chinese
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    Yes
Director Biography - Yufei Yang

Graduated from Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication and gained master degree in July 2016.

Graduated from Nanjing University of Journalism and Communication School and gained bachelor degree in 2013.

Participated in several anthropological documentaries filmmaking, including the Ministry of Culture "Visual Ethnography of Chinese Festivals" Project "Mao Festival", "Duan Festival" and "Ghost Festival" working on cinematography and editing ; also involved in media documentaries, Phoenix Vision "Donald Files" working as interviewer and script writer, and worked as intern director in CCTV9 New Youth Column.

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Director Statement

There lives in Hakka area a unique group of women-nun. "Aunt" is what the Hakka people call the nuns. Temples provide them with a space where they keep a world completely to their own. Liu Yunxiang, a nun living in the Guangfu Temple, has entered the late years of her life, during which she had been sold as child bride and witnessed the Civil War, the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. In 2015, beams of the temple collapsed. During this whole year, the temple was torn down and rebuilt. Aunt Yunxiang still maintains traditional lifestyle, believing that gods will bless her with someone to take over the temple. Sun rises and sets, the temple is just like an old well, reflecting and witnessing happiness and vicissitudes of the world.