Film Review: 76 Days



Wuhan is a city of 11 million people in the Hubei province of central China. Odds are you probably hadn’t heard of it until late December 2019, when it became the epicentre for global news following the outbreak of a disease which would rapidly morph into a global pandemic. COVID-19 has gone on to take over the narrative of 2020 around the world, but whilst there’s finally light at the end of the tunnel it’s going to take a long time to get back to any kind of normal.

After being initially slow off the mark, the Chinese authorities locked down the city on January 23 2020. This quarantine lasted for 76 days and encompassed over 56 million people within the region. Weixi Chen and Hao Wu’s new documentary takes its name from this period. With the help of a local reporter who decide to remain anonymous, the film is shot in four hospitals located within the city during the outbreak.

76 Days focusses on the relentless work of the emergency services and frontline workers within Wuhan’s hospitals to deal with the pandemic. As time passes, we witness the early confusion soon being replaced by health professionals being stretched to breaking point and finally the slow descent back to normality. Brilliant editing and intelligent decisions make 76 Days a riveting and powerful documentary about the bravery, resoluteness and empathy of medical staff. Highlighting the pressures and challenges of the situation.

76 Days is released on demand by Dogwoof on 22 January.

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