IMDb > Not One Less (1999)
Yi ge dou bu neng shao
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Not One Less (1999) More at IMDbPro »Yi ge dou bu neng shao (original title)

Photos (See all 11 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
Not One Less -- The charming story of a 13-year old substitute teacher in rural China who's been promised a bonus if she keeps her young charges from dropping out of school.
Not One Less -- Open-ended Trailer from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment


User Rating:
7.8/10   6,563 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Down 29% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Xiangsheng Shi (writer)
View company contact information for Not One Less on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
30 October 1999 (South Korea) See more »
In a remote mountain village, the teacher must leave for a month, and the mayor can find only a 13-year old girl... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
17 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Amateurs Present Good, Simple Story See more (73 total) »


  (in credits order)
Minzhi Wei ... Wei Minzhi
Huike Zhang ... Zhang Huike
Zhenda Tian ... Village Chief
Enman Gao ... Teacher Gao
Zhimei Sun ... Sun Zhimei
Yuying Feng ... TV Receptionist
Fanfan Li ... TV Host
Yichang Zhang ... Mr Zhang, instructor
Zhanqing Xu ... Brick factory owner
Hanzhi Liu ... Zhang Huike's mother
Ma Guolin ... Bus station man
Wu Wanlu ... TV station manager
Liu Ru ... Train station announcer
Shulan Wang ... Stationery store clerk
Fu Xinmin ... TV station director
Mei Bai ... Manager, Juxin Restaurant
Mingshan Zhang ... Student
Jiao Jie ... Student
Huimin Rong ... Student
Sun Zhiwei ... Student
Ming Xinhong ... Student
Tian Xuewei ... Student
Li Mel ... Student
Lingyu Li ... Student

Directed by
Yimou Zhang 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Xiangsheng Shi  writer

Produced by
Weiping Zhang .... executive producer
Yu Zhao .... producer
Original Music by
Bao San 
Cinematography by
Yong Hou 
Film Editing by
Ru Zhai 
Production Design by
Juiping Cao 
Costume Design by
Huamiao Tong 
Production Management
Xiaofeng Hu .... production manager
Zhenyan Zhang .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Dong Xie .... assistant director
Te Ya .... assistant director
Sound Department
Lala Wu .... sound
Editorial Department
Stew Markel .... telecine assistant

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Yi ge dou bu neng shao" - China (original title)
See more »
106 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Yimou insisted on capturing natural reactions from the amateur actors. To achieve this, he often used hidden cameras and microphones. This resulted in a film-shot to film-used ratio of 35 to 1. Normally, because of cost, the ratio should be 3.5 to 1. However, because the film was shot on 16mm (an later blown up to 35mm), the price was about the same because of the cheaper film stock.See more »
TV Host:Do you like the city?
Zhang Huike:Yes.
TV Host:What is good about it?
Zhang Huike:The city is beautiful and prosperous. Much better than the country.
TV Host:What's the most lasting impression?
Zhang Huike:That I had to beg for food. I will always remember that.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Rewind This! (2013)See more »


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16 out of 20 people found the following review useful.
Amateurs Present Good, Simple Story, 15 March 2006
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States

There isn't much to this story, I but I still liked it. The lead character, played by Wei Minzhi, is supposed to be playing a 13-year-old girl and was really interesting to watch, as were the young students and some of the other people in this film.

Oddly, all these actors were amateurs, real-life students and people of varied professions. It's nicely filmed, too, despite the bleak background many times. I find the dialog of many Chinese films to be very pleasing. Yes, there is a lot of receptiveness, at least in the translations, but it's tolerable. There is very little profanity and plenty of good old-fashioned values and feelings of people, simply told. You don't find much of this is in modern-day movies of the Western World. The colors in here - the reds, yellows and oranges - are always a treat for the eyes and the Asian kids' faces are intriguing.

This film is very different from anything Western audiences are used to, but I recommend it for those who realize that fact and are okay with it.

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