Liu Xing (Ye Liu) has come from Beijing to a nameless American university to pursue a PhD in cosmology; he's done smart, incisive work in the field, and he's being given the chance to work for groundbreaking theorist Dr. Reiser (Aidan Quinn). It's a wonderful moment for Xing; he's found opportunity, and a place that will gratefully take everything he has to offer. The feature-film debut of opera director Chen Shi-Zheng, Dark Matter follows Xing as his dream, slowly and gradually, becomes a curse -- and shows us the desperate, dangerous expression of Xing's sadness and confusion.

Written by Billy Shebar, Dark Matter is inspired by the University of Iowa shootings of November, 1991, where physics post-graduate student Gang Lu killed five people and paralyzed another for life before killing himself. But Dark Matter isn't a ticking-clock thriller; it's a more contemplative film than that. The camera captures big visions and images, and it isn't concerned with the nuts-and-bolts shots of a crime story. Instead, we see Xing, in the rain, transfixed by a statue of famed American astronomer Edwin Hubble. Xing wants to look to the skies. Of course, he still has to live on Earth. ...
categories Reviews, Cinematical