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Global Voices

Last Train Home (#718)

Every spring, China's cities are plunged into chaos, all at once, as a tidal wave of humanity attempts to return home by train. It is the Chinese New Year. The wave is made up of millions of migrant factory workers. The homes they seek are in the rural villages where they left behind family to seek work in the booming coastal cities. It is an epic spectacle that tells us much about China, a country discarding traditional ways as it hurtles towards modernity and global economic dominance. Last Train Home, a visually striking debut film from Chinese Canadian director Lixin Fan, draws us into the fractured lives of a single migrant family caught up in this desperate annual migration. Sixteen years ago, the Zhangs abandoned their young children to find work in the city, consoled by the hope that their wages would lift their children into a better life. But in a bitterly ironic twist, the Zhangs's hopes for the future are undone by their very absence. [86 minutes] Closed Captioning

PBS Video

Series Description: A new international independent documentary series from the Independent Television Service (ITVS), GLOBAL VOICES samples the best of international documentary. In its premiere season, the series features five all-new global docs and 21 notable international documentaries that have previously aired on PBS in other forums.

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These episodes of Global Voices aired in the last few months on Iowa Public Television.

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