China Blue

Micha X. Peled

"Made in China" is often written on the clothes we wear, but under which circumstances are those cheap jeans and T-shirts actually made? China Blue takes a look behind the closed factory gates and gives the anonymous workers a face. Like young Jasmine, who endlessly snips away loose threads from completed jeans destined for the Western market. She is one of 130 million Chinese farmer's children who exchanged their rural life for a job in a factory: the world's largest migration wave. Jasmine earns six cents an hour, often works seven days a week, and does not get any extra money for overtime. She shares a room with twelve other girls, and the bland food she is dished up every day is automatically deducted from her meagre wages. A similar topic was previously explored in the documentary A Decent Factory (2004, Thomas Balmès), in which representatives of Nokia investigated cellular telephone production in China. What is new about China Blue is that it makes the Chinese workers the protagonists. Here, we see a factory owner talking scornfully about his labourers, and employees who have to lie about the working conditions during inspections. The shooting of China Blue was interrupted several times by the Chinese authorities, the crew was arrested and interrogated, and tapes were confiscated.


Micha X. Peled
Country of production
United States
87 minutes
Spoken language
Cantonese, English, Mandarin
Production company
Teddy Bear Films
Dutch distributor
Cinema Delicatessen