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Documentary about the brutal murder of Chinese student Zhang Yingying releases NA trailer

作者:admin 2020-12-14

Documentary about the brutal murder of Chinese student Zhang Yingying releases NA trailer

Ye Lifeng (second from right), lets out a wail of grief as her husband Zhang Ronggao (left), the father of slain Chinese scholar Zhang Yingying, reads a statement to the media outside the US Courthouse in Peoria, Illinois, on June 24, after a federal jury found Brendt Christensen guilty of kidnapping and murdering Zhang Yingying. Photo: VCG

Finding Yingying – a feature-length documentary about Zhang Yingying, a 26-year-old Chinese student who was brutally murdered by a former physics graduate student at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign in the US – announced that it is on virtual cinemas in North America since Friday with the release of the film’s new English trailer. 

Directed by Zhang’s former classmate Jenny Shi, who was determined to make a film about Zhang’s tragic death, the documentary focuses on the search for Zhang’s body after the killer, Brendt Allen Christensen, confessed to her murder. However, the documentary also seeks to show “who Yingying was” by including a warmer layer that portrays Zhang’s lovable nature through her detailed diary entries. 

The documentary previously premiered at the 2020 South by Southwest, a US film festival that praises creative filmmakers and proactive film productions, and Shi ended up taking home the Special Jury Prize for Breakthrough Voice for the film. 

The true story behind the documentary is an ongoing tough journey that begins with Zhang being reported missing in June 2017 and continues in June 2019 when a US Federal jury finds Christensen guilty of kidnapping and slaying Zhang. However, the journey will not end without the discovery of Zhang’s body, which will prove difficult since the killer has refused to reveal its location even though he has been sentenced to life in prison.  

“In this new country, I’m here and proud to tell you, we will not give up until we find her,” Zhang’s boyfriend says in the trailer. 

Finding Yingying involves highly emotional scenes that show the stark truth about the brutal case as well as the sorrow of Zhang’s parents and boyfriend after the loss of their loved one.  

“It stopped my breath when I saw her friends [in the documentary] celebrate her birthday and wish her a bright future,” a netizen posted on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo.

“I planned to study abroad in the US three years ago when the news about Yingying was still ongoing at the time. Now, I’m a year past graduation and still feeling haunted when I hear her name. Who should take the burden for her tragedy as an international student killed in a foreign country? Definitely not her poor parents,” posted another. 

No information about a possible Chinese mainland screening has been released. 


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