Director Zhao Baogang came out with massive hit Struggle in 2007, and returned in 2009 with another hit My Youthfulness that had the same sharp enjoyable dialogue. We were thus anticipating his follow up, supposedly entitled Beijing Youth, in this trilogy of dramas portraying the lives of young Chinese. But instead he’s next tackling next Hun Yin Bao Wei Zhan, which deals with the lives of three married women and their different struggles with their increasing power in the workplace, and how they balance their homelife with it. We’re disappointed, but the plot of this drama is interesting enough to interest to see where he goes with it.
Synopsis and more promo pics below.
The story revolves around three workplace women, Li Mei, Yang Dan and Lan Xin who are old classmates that are at the “seven-year-itch” place in their marriages. Their world is shaken as Yang Dan suddenly divorces. She takes over her husband’s company, and Li Mei in an effort to find her own self-happiness decides to join the company. Slowly she rises in the workplace which threatens her homelife with her husband Guo Yang who has a hard time adjusting to the change. In contrast, Lan Xin’s husband in order to maintain their marriage increasingly takes up chores and responsibility in caring for their daughter. The wives are increasingly more powerful, as the husbands fall under their shadow. In their courage to pursue their careers and with their husband’s support, they finally find success in both areas of their lives. – Source for Synopsis
With the great dialogue and pacing that Struggle and My Youthfulness had, this could be a wonderful drama. But while such a story obviously requires older actors, Zhang Baogang is famous himself enough now to not have to use such famous faces. There are plenty of 30+ actors from film academies that still haven’t gotten their break (*coughs* Jing Dong) so to see him use Tong Dawei and Ma Yili, both already famous from Struggle is disappointing. Not to mention casting Huang Lei who’s even older and has dabbled so much in different sheres of entertainment already that casting him seems a waste.
But I suppose that one can always wait for Beijing Youth to see new faces, and at least now with his increasing pull Zhao Baogang can afford very pretty promo pictures, ones that do a good job of portraying women power. Click the pics for bigger versions.
This one pic is from a different website, so not as HQ.
Women: Ma Yili, Yu Na, Meng Guangmei, Ma Yanli, Yuan Li
Men: Tong Dawei, Huang Lei
I have no idea why there’s so many women and so few men….the men really just don’t matter in this I guess. Poor husband who gets divorced and kicked out of his company by his wife probably doesn’t get much screentime.