The island of Taiwan is given a bird’s-eye view in the nature documentary Beyond Beauty: Taiwan from Above. Featuring helicopter shot landscapes and narration by Wu Nien-jen, the natural beauty of Taiwan is contrast by the environmental impact of humanity.
Beyond Beauty: Taiwan from Above is a cinematic essay, which shows how beautiful Taiwan is, while also warning that this beauty is being destroyed by human interference. A lot of the scenery in the film is absolutely breaktaking, featuring everything from Taiwan’s numerous mountain ranges to its very blue coastline to even a smoking volcano. There are many long stretches of the film, where there is nothing but images and music. When the narration does chime in, it is either to provide some context to the images or to describe how the natural beauty of Taiwan is being disrupted.
Beyond Beauty is a great escapist experience, while also giving some important messages. Probably the most visually metaphoric image in the film comes from the shot of a field with multiple footprints. Even though Taiwan is a very beautiful island, things like clear-cutting, fish farms, and the world’s largest coal-fired power plant all leave an environmental impact, which might seriously affect Taiwan in the future. Altogether, Beyond Beauty is a breath-taking and informative aerial look at Taiwan.
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- Saturday, November 8, 1:30 PM – The Royal Cinema