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Two unemployed slackers, neither with job prospects nor motivation, hang out in sheltered town in China trying to make sense of their aimless and uncertain futures. As youths, they struggle for individual freedom and the social responsibility that comes along with it. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
The story begins with an outline of the mundaneness of the lives and future of two Chinese youths, and progresses into showing in a short amount of time just how much their lives and personal situations change; dealing with unemployment, troublesome love lives and coming into their own a beautiful story unfolds.
With allusions to the film Pulp Fiction throughout and a recurring song that touches the heart, with solid performances by all of the actors (especially Zhao Tao) it was a very good film. My only criticism is at times the story can be slow, though overall the story is far more interesting than one sees in normal cinema.
The film was particularly strong in the simplistic nature of the film-making itself, with nothing ever over-the-top. It aimed to tell the situation as how it really is, and to tell life like how it really is, not some sort of Hollywoodized conception of life. The artistic reflection that was put into the film shows a great and amazing depth to it that is often hard to find.
Overall, a great film my Jia Zhang-ke. The feelings of hopelessness that he is able to make oneself feel make this a must-see for anyone who enjoys sad cinema and existentialism, and is interested in the struggles of youth and issues of modernization and globalization.
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