Global Times | 2013-5-7
By Liao Danlin
People used to say that when you start to cherish the old days, it means you are getting old. So it’s a bit strange that so many young people today are thinking about their past.
Reviewing the hot topics on Sina Weibo or other social networks last year, content about memories in the 1980s or 1990s such as pictures, television dramas, or merely some kind of snack or drink that is no longer in production could easily generate a buzz.
The recent movie release So Young, directed by famous actress Zhao Wei, has proven that there is a domestic appetite for films that depict our collective memory. The film has broken a few box-office records domestically. By earning an estimated 45 million yuan ($7.3 million) on its opening day April 26, the movie managed to beat the previous record set just months ago by Lost in Thailand.
Iron Man 3 hit Chinese theaters four days later, and domestic films usually don’t stand a chance when competing with a Hollywood blockbuster like that. However, So Young has become a real exception to the rule, gaining a total of over 500 million yuan ($81 million) in ticket sales by Monday.
The box-office success made So Young become even more controversial as many moviegoers have negative opinions about the film.
So Young is adapted from a popular novel, To Our Youth that [is] Fading Away, written by Xin Yiwu and published in 2007. The book is the coming-of-age story of six college girls who share a dorm room, focusing on one particularly bright and passionate girl named Zheng Wei (played by Yang Zishan in the movie).
Xin’s novel focuses on the love stories among young people and each character’s change after they graduate, making a contrast between the purity of youth and the cold reality of adult life in modern society.
The storyline of So Young remains pretty much true to the book (after trimming to four girls in the room) but omits several key background stories. For example, the plot of the protagonist’s first lover, Lin Jing (played by singer Han Geng), is vaguely portrayed.
Audiences also joked that the first half of the film, which features college days, and the second half, which abruptly jumps 10 years ahead, are like two totally different films. Not only are the pace and tone changed, but the scenes in the second half are chopped up, making it necessary to fill in all the missing plots with dialogue.
Film critic Succeed Be summarized the problem this way: “Zhao just tried too hard to include everything.”
Despite its imperfect storylines, the film’s staying power at the box office is clear evidence that the film does contain enjoyable moments.
Zheng’s excuse of being late for class and the boys’ conversation about girls in their bedroom bring big laughs to the cinema.
The beautiful photography and Suede’s title song “So Young” also puts the audience in the right mood as it fills them with extreme emotions - happiness, sorrow, perplexity or anger.
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I pretty much agrees with this article..
(130503) Han Geng’s Weibo Update@Han Geng: 10 years of youth, our persistence will not be changed by time, our courageous will also not be obliterated by life, passionate blood remain! 10 years later, so young! @Wang Tao @gyl1983 @Fang Yuan #5.4 Youth Friends Day#
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