An ordinary village in Northern China, the last day of the winter vacation. Four idle, aimless adolescents gather at Zhou Zhixin's home, a friend who lives with his father, brother and ...
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An ordinary village in Northern China, the last day of the winter vacation. Four idle, aimless adolescents gather at Zhou Zhixin's home, a friend who lives with his father, brother and nephew. Like most contemporary teenagers, these youths want to enjoy their last day of holiday and simply hang out in this place where nothing ever seems likely to happen. Their conversations are desultory and they sometimes seem to argue for argument's sake. One of them, Laowu, talks frankly with his girlfriend about how teenage love might affect their studies, while Laobao questions school's value and relevance to real life.Written by
Locarno Film Festival
Embodies its themes of boredom, sparseness and a hint of vague, almost apathetic existential crisis. Incredibly difficult to focus on with a 10 or 15 second gap between each line of dialogue.
I don't know what to make of the directing style. Sometimes it seems like it's reaching for one thing, but comes off as untrained performers awkwardly respond to stilted direction. A generous, but maybe accurate reading is that the characters are just going through the motions with a deathly apathy. The final scene kind of feels like a punchline. Like it's an hour and a half long joke. Maybe it is. Maybe the dialogue is better in its native Mandarin.
Cinematography and style is pretty great. Almost no diegetic sound nor visual contradicts the soviet staleness established in the very first soon. Music helps relieve the boredom, but barely.
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