First up – the script for the film has been completed. I was super excited for it, then super against it, and now just conflicted. (In the “drama version of the book” that advertised itself as “how the scriptwriter wants to present the story” , Ming Cheng was repeated kicked by the Ming’s and at one point felt ashamed that as a servant, he would dare to make fun of the young master. Yes, the USSR-trained and French-educated communist felt like he was acting above his class, and a family of righteous protagonists made a habit of abusing an abused child. I’m counting on my suspicions that these parts were written by a ghost writer, otherwise I take back every nice thing I’ve ever said about Zhang Yong.)
A lesser actor would’ve found it hard to express one emotion at a time, but Wang Kai told Ming Cheng’s entire life story in 2 seconds in this scene here as he finds out the true identity of Ming Tai’s father.
Somehow Wang Kai is able to show that Ming Cheng feels genuinely happy for Ming Tai and his father while expressing emotions that are clearly not all joy. While the first half of the sentence was intended to comfort Ming Tai’s father, as he shifts to the final phrase, his expression and tone of voice changes. The concerned, comforting voice of “this is a good thing” becomes distant in “A wonderful thing” as he is lost in his own thought. At the same time, his eyes also look away from Ming Tai’s father to the distance, perhaps to the father he had never met.