7.1/10
1,165
23 user 34 critic

Springtime in a Small Town (2002)

Xiao cheng zhi chun (original title)
Liyan and Yuwen live in post-war torpor, childless but with Liyan's school-aged sister. He coughs, imagining he has TB; Yuwan embroiders; they sleep in separate rooms. A surprise visit from... See full summary »

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4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Jingfan Hu ...
Jun Wu ...
Bai Qing Xin ...
Xiao Keng Ye ...
Si Si Lu ...
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Storyline

Liyan and Yuwen live in post-war torpor, childless but with Liyan's school-aged sister. He coughs, imagining he has TB; Yuwan embroiders; they sleep in separate rooms. A surprise visit from Liyan's boyhood friend Zhang, a big city physician, wakes up the household. To Zhang's amazement, he discovers his friend's wife is his own youthful sweetheart. Possibilities abound: an affair, an arranged marriage of Zhang and Little Sister, now 16, or simply ending ennui and embracing vitality. Can a stifling atmosphere of Chinese Chekhov give way to spring? Alcohol at a birthday party speeds resolution. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some thematic elements | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

11 December 2003 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Springtime in a Small Town  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$7,506 (USA) (14 May 2004)

Gross:

$42,258 (USA) (18 June 2004)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema) |

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Referenced in The Holiday (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
No bad guys here - but life sometimes sucks
19 March 2012 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

This a love story of sorts set in the 1940's in post-war China. It is a love triangle or a love quadrangle, depending if you include the 16-year-old young lady who was yet to know love at her age, or was about to.

The story is fairly typical: a loveless marriage, probably sexless due to the husband's ill health, but a marriage nevertheless with the wife doing her best to look after her ailing husband. Then an old lover showed up to create turmoil in their otherwise peaceful, though probably unhappy, lives.

I find the acting a bit green at places. The pace was slow. But the setting, both indoor and outdoor, was visually beautiful and the story, told in an unhurried fashioned, engaging. There are no bad guys here. And yet grief and unhappiness prevailed simply because things just happened that way. And changes were simply out of the question because they lived in an era where people were bound by certain moral obligations.

This film demands patience, but is one that engages. Director Tian has told a common love story well.


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