Timber Gang (aka Last Lumberjacks): (Mu Bang)

From The dGenerate Films Collection

Directed by YU Guangyi

90 minutes / Color
English / English subtitles
Release: 2012

Yu Guangyi's stunning debut explores a grueling winter amongst loggers in Northeast China as they employ traditional practices through one last, fateful expedition. A lasting testament to disappearing traditions, Last Lumberjacks "is a fascinating glimpse at a rare way of life that few will ever witness" (Ain't It Cool News)

For generations, the lumberjacks of Heilongjiang, China have made their living harvesting timber amidst a barren, wintry landscape. These woodcutters confront the elements, living in makeshift cabins surrounded by snow and ice. hand tools, sleds and horses are the only technology they employ to drag massive trees down the perilous slopes of Black Bear Valley. At constant risk of injury and death, they attempt to appease the mountain gods with ancient rituals and sacrifices. Despite their heroic efforts to subsist, the deforestation caused by their decades-long customs my lead to their ultimate demise.

"Pure, unadorned cinema verite… consistently astonishing."—Robert Koehler, Variety

"A privileged peek into some exceedingly harsh lives in a snow-bound corner of the remote Heilongjiang province"—Neil Young, Jigsaw Lounge

"Gives the docu-adventurism of Werner Herzog a run for his money."— Ben Cho, Moving Pictures Magazine

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YU Guangyi

Select Accolades

  • Winner, Jury Prize, Tokyo Filmex
  • Winner, Best Director and Jury Film Prize, Cinema Digital Seoul Film Festival
  • Vienna International Film Festival
  • Amsterdam International Film Festival
  • Locarno International Film Festival
  • Vancouver International Film Festival


Explores the cruel realities of sweatshop labor and workplace injury in China, and one lawyer's mission to defend worker's rights.

SHU Haolun | 2012 | 50 minutes | Color | English; Mandarin | English subtitles