We the Workers
Release year: 2017
Run time: 174 min
Film type: Documentary
Shot over a six-year period (2009-15) mainly in the industrial heartland of south China, a major hub in the global supply chain, this film follows labour activists as they find common grounds with workers, helping them to negotiate with local officials and factory owners over wages and working conditions. Threats, attacks, detention and boredom become part of their daily lives as they struggle to strengthen worker solidarity in the face of threats and pressures from police and their employers. In the process, we see in their words and actions the emergence of a nascent working-class consciousness and labour movement in China.
Wen Hai studied at the Beijing Film Academy and has since 2001 been active as an independent film director. Among his best known films are Floating Dust (2004), which won the Prix Georges Beauregard at the 16th Festival International du Documentaire in Marseille in 2005; Dream Walking (2006), awarded the Grand Prize at the 2006 Cinéma du Réel; and the film We, which won the Horizons Special Mention award at the 2008 Venice International Film Festival. Wen Hai also worked as a camera man on WangBing's film Three Sisters (2012). His 2016 book The Gaze of Exile: Witnessing Chinese Independent Documentary Films （放逐的凝视——见证中国独立纪录片）is published in Taipei by Tendency.
- 2017 Jury Prize the 5th Wexford Documentary Film Festival
- 2017 The Third Place, Feature Category, The 10th Chinese Documentary Festival
- 2017 Grand Prix, The 9th Festival Filmer le travail