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Take the C to 81st Street
A replica in China of an idyllic Austrian village poses provocative questions about appropriation and authenticity.
Double Happiness (Ella Raidel | Austria and China | 75 min.)
The idyllic mountain village of Hallstatt, Austria, has been precisely replicated near Huizou, China. Residents of the original Hallstatt visit their recreated town, baffled but also fascinated to find that every detail, in some cases down to the furniture in their homes, has been re-created thousands of miles away—setting the stage for provocative questions about tradition and innovation, copying and creativity, and appropriation and authenticity. Director Ella Raidel presents a multifaceted film experience, at once a thoughtful and sumptuously-filmed visual feast and a docu-musical of sorts, evoking The Sound of Music (1965). The documentary gets at questions about fairy tales around Austrian culture, the perfect life, and what it means to find home.