Review: Forever Young is a poignant love letter to the world

 I cried three times in the process of editing this review. This sweepingly beautiful but simple ode to Tsinghua University is a tear-jerker for all seasons.

Set against one of the most stunning visuals of the year, Forever Young 无问西东 tells its simple tales with an incredibly romantic lens that makes it difficult not to admire.  Director Li Fangfang (Heaven Eternal, Love Everlasting) always manages to play my emotions just right to evoke all my emotions for the world she captures.

The film from centers around four loosely connected stories of six characters (played by Wang Leehom, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen, Huang Xiaoming, Tie Zheng, and Chen Chusheng) facing their true selves through making difficult choices, from scary ones like life-and-death decisions to the even scarier decision of picking a college major. (more…)

Forever Young finally sets a date

Reasons why Zhang Ziyi is still a queen.  Also, #BestCinematography

My most anticipated film since forever, Forever Young 无问西东 has finally set a release date for January 14th! I really hope someone picks it for a NA release.

Starring Zhang Ziyi, Huang Xiaoming, Chang Chen, Wang Leehom, and Chen Chusheng, director Li Fangfang’s  ode  to Tsinghua University focuses on the coming-of-age of the school and the nation as depicted through five of its students through the year.

The movie’s had three trailers and all of them are extremely gorgeous, but I still have no idea what the plot is.

Forever Love trailer:

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Zhang Ziyi, Huang Xiaoming, Chang Chen comes of age with a young nation

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Best Cinematography of the Year?

The second film from one of China’s best young directors, Li Fangfang (Heaven Eternal, Earth Everlasting),  Forever Young 无问西东 has finally released a trailer after over five years . It’s tentatively set for a late 2017 release.

Starring Zhang Ziyi, Huang Xiaoming, Chang Chen, Wang Leehom, and Chen Chusheng, the ode to Tsinghua University focuses on the coming-of-age of the school and the nation as depicted through five of its students.

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Weibo Wednesday: October 29, 2014

Chen Xuedong on Grade One reality show
陈学冬: 一口塑料普通话的我也是醉了[拜拜]一年级好看吗?
Celebrities plus cute kids is always a plus, right? Hunan TV recently began broadcasting a new reality show called Grade One (一年级), in which actor Chen Xuedong and actress Song Jia are put in charge of a new first-grade class. Watch the show on Hunan TV’s YouTube account.

Me with my mouth full of plastic Mandarin*, I’m also intoxicated. Is Grade One fun to watch?

* “Plastic Mandarin” is a way of referring to Mandarin that is heavily influenced by the Hunan dialects.

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Republican-era coming of age film, Forever Young, releases stills

Is this really Sun Quan from Red Cliff? He looks younger, now that almost two millenium have passed..

Upcoming film Forever Young无问西东 doesn’t go easy on the star power. In the exact opposite of what usually happens during Photoshoot Fridays, Zhang Ziyi is outnumbered by males, aka Huang Xiaoming, Wang Leehom, Chang Chen, and Chen Chusheng in what appears to be a Republican era movie.

Here, four youths with different experiences and paths come to walk on the same path (surprise, surprise). Chen Chusheng’s character starts off principled and strong willed, but quickly becomes lost; Wang Leehom’s character carries heavy luggage, bearing the hopes of others with each step he takes. Meanwhile, Huang Xiaoming’s character’s steps are stopped by love, for there are people who must be taken care of. The more troubled Chang Chen’s character feels, the calmer he appears. All of them seek to find their ideal self, and on their journey, they experience love/hate/etc, life and death, numerous struggles…

All in all, Forever Young 无问西东 offers the promise of another coming-of-age story (but…a pretty one, woohoo!) The film is directed by Li Fangfang; more stills below the cut.

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Unexpected Collaboration: Chen Chusheng ft. MC Hotdog


Drunk 《醉》, featuring rapper MC Hotdog, is the second single from Chen Chusheng‘s (陈楚生) new album I Know You Are Not Far 《我知道你离我不远》.

The Huayi Music artist first rose to fame with his début single Has Anyone Told You 《有没有人告诉你》 after winning Super Boys 2007. Chen Chusheng’s last album Addiction 《瘾》 was in 2011, though many of his compositions were in Huayi Movies during this almost 3 year hiatus. The full album is available for listen on sina.

I thought I would never get drunk
Falling into this feeble defense
Chewing up those self-righteous dreams
Swallowing up the city’s petty lies

I thought I was flying high
I forgot that I was falling down
I need to shut my troublesome mouth
Hugging my stable legs for support

Let the rain pound against my face
Shaming this sinister mind
Never a follower
I must follow my own route
How can I care about these tiny injuries
I am not afraid of walking alone in the dark
Loneliness allows me to hear my inner voice
I buried my youth on this uneven road
I am willing – I accept
The sin of self-righteousness

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Han Geng injures himself, but still looks great on “Stars in Danger: The High Dive”

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Bleeding? Bandage wrist support? Bring it on!

Han Geng recently injured his mouth after forgetting to shut it during a jump off the 3m platform.  Bleeding ensued, but he was luckily fine and bravely continued to dive later that night. I’m so happy that both TV shows seem to really actually be trying to make the stars work for it, especially given the ridiculous amazing world-class coaches the stars get.

Han Geng will be heading an all star list that includes Vanness Wu, Fu Xinbo, Chen Chusheng, Li Xiaoshuang (?!) the gymnast, Liu Xuan (!!!) the gymnast, Huang Zheng and Sha Baoliang , not to mention diving rock stars Hu Jia , Xiong Ni and Gao Min.  Watch Han Geng’s super pretty promo for it below from xinger geng@YouTube, and expect a post for probably every promo for either diving competition.

Celebrity diving takes off in Chinese television

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Raise your hand if you want to see Han Geng, in a speedo!

As celebrity diving takes off in both the U.S. and Europe, how can the world’s biggest diving nation fall behind? Like elsewhere, the two major diving formats, Celebrity Splash 中国星跳跃 and High Dive: Stars in Danger 星跳水立方 are fighting it out in China. Jiangsu TV’s Stars in Danger have already secured the Water Cube as a venue, with Vanness Wu, Chen Chusheng and Han Geng as the so-far confirmed guests. Joining them will be Olympic Champion Hu Jia with the soft and lovely commentator voice.

While the entertainment star power is so far a little less for Zhejiang TV’s Celebrity Splash, it still has  eyecandy in model-actor Zhang Lunshuo as one of the three confirmed guests, not to mention diver-turned-actor Tian Liang and the entire Chinese national diving team. Fu Xinbo has also begun training, although I’m not sure which one

Which stars would you like to see in either competition?

2007 Super Boys reunite!

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I can’t tell if the tears in my eyes are because of the boys, or that giant logo blocking them.

The 2007 Super Boys, probably the group of Supers with the most brotherhood, reunites once more after over 5 years. Through these 5 years, they’ve survived fires, run away and disappeared, got married, had a kid, and even went to jail. Watch the video below, with either interviews or performances by all of them but Su Xing. I think it’s really warming how almost all of their individual songs were written by themselves or another Super Boy.