7.9/10
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16 user 7 critic

Postmen in the Mountains (1999)

Nashan naren nagou (original title)
Unrated | | Drama | 1999 (China)
A father, a retiring mailman, walks his son over his job in the mountainous regions of Hunan province.

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6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Hao Chen ...
Dong girl
...
Son
Rujun Ten ...
Father
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Storyline

An old postman has spent his whole life delivering mail to the mountain of Hunan and is about to retire. His only son is due to take over his duties. As father and son journey through the mountains, the son begins to appreciate the toil and burden his father has to bear as postman for the villagers, and the old postman is also deeply moved as his son relates his mother's anxiety as she waits for him to return home from every trip. Written by L.H. Wong <lhw@sfs.org.sg>

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Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

1999 (China)  »

Also Known As:

Postiers dans les montagnes  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,045 (USA) (23 January 2004)

Gross:

$203,975 (USA) (1 July 2005)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Color:

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Did You Know?

Goofs

Michael Learns to Rock's "That's Why You Go Away" is featured in the film's diegetic soundtrack. But according to the film's beginning intertitles, the movie is set in the early 1980s, which make it impossible for any radio station to play the song, which was released in the 1990s. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Simply remarkable - a film not to be missed
23 April 2005 | by (sf, usa) – See all my reviews

I only chance upon this precious gem of a film from China while watching the DVD extra features of a Hong Kong film. Director Carol Lai talked about how she came to select actor Liu Ye in her film "The Floating Landscape" 2003. I caught her mentioning the film "Nashan Naren Nagou" (aka "Postmen in the Mountains) and I checked it out. It was a remarkable surprise - I thoroughly enjoyed the film. Its positive energy never thrust at you, but just be, and at times touching that would bring a heartwarming smile and tear simultaneously.

It may appear to be a simple film about the life of a postman who delivers mail in the rural mountains, but there's a lot more than meets the eye. And what a feast for the eye: the scenery is amazing and the cultural folklore enchanting. The simplicity (ease) of it all: direction, storytelling, cinematography, editing with sound and music flowing with the natural performances become an integral whole. The depth of varying emotions between father and son, mother and son, father and mother (in nostalgic flashbacks), father and the dog (affectionately called: the 'second son') - more than subtly reveals through the son's narration and realization how much the postman job means to his father and the people he served all these years. It's no simple story after all - a maturing journey where the son and the father grew to appreciate each other, strengthened their bond and increased their love of the family's central 'pillar' - the mother/the wife in their lives. The storyline is the staple of Asian culture.

As you go on this journey with the central characters, you will be rewarded more than hundredth fold. "That mountain, that man, that dog"

  • the literal translation of the Chinese title of the film comes as


naturally and gently as the film is delivered. "Postmen in the Mountains" is not to be missed. It's available on DVD in Chinese with English subtitles. (If I remember right, it even featured a tune in English somehow.)


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