"Shanghai: Life in the Megacity" offers a glimpse at the quality and pace of daily life in China's most populated metropolis. Beneath the breathtaking skyline of gleaming glass high rises and pulsating neon, 24 million residents work to raise their families, make ends meet, and find their foothold in an increasingly competitive environment.
The film is populated by a series of brief, but vivid personality portraits. A bicycle delivery man struggles to keep up with the booming online sales the city generates on a daily basis. A young starlet rehearses a routine in a theater that was first constructed in the 1930s, and hopes to one day achieve international stardom. A family of three tours a private daycare as they discuss the burdens of rapidly rising costs of living.
In the past year, housing prices have increased by as much as a third. This is the consequence of living in such a trendy, modernized mecca of industry and recreation. Many people who work in Shanghai cannot actually afford to make their home there.
In spite of these challenges, the glitter and promise of the city never ceases to inspire. The people of Shanghai are big dreamers, and empowered by a profound optimism and work ethic. The government encourages their entrepreneurial spirit, especially in regards to emerging technologies. Start up companies are given tremendous support as they work to develop the tools of tomorrow. The film profiles one such entrepreneur, a young man who has returned to the city after years of study in the West. He's designing and testing essential safety technologies for self-driving cars. His story highlights many of the qualities that make Shanghai such a desirable destination for people throughout the globe, and why the city remains on the forefront of innovation.
Viewers will also get a sense of how the city functions in regards to infrastructure, transportation and the shipping of imports and exports. In addition, the film features an array of beautifully captured images evoking the city's nightlife, entertainment, and other cultural attractions.
"Shanghai: Life in the Megacity" presents a thrilling mosaic of one of the world's most exciting cities.