Lost in Beijing

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© 2007 Laurel Films − All right reserved.
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Lost in Beijing (2007)

112 min - Drama, Foreign, Romance - 16 February 2007
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A look at modern-day life in China's capital centered on a ménage-a-quatre involving a young woman, her boss, her husband and her boss's wife. Massage girl Pingguo (Apple) (The stunning Fan Bingbing) lives in a cramped apartment with her bad-tempered window cleaner husband Kun (Tong Dawei), barely eking by on their miniscule pay. When Pingguo gets raped by her boss Lin (Tony Leung) one afternoon, Kun, who is washing the windows of the building, witnesses the act. The enraged Kun tries to get even first by (unsuccessfully) blackmailing Lin, then by sleeping with Lin's wife (Elaine Kam). The relationships get even more tangled when Pingguo discovers she's pregnant. With the paternity of the baby up in the air, Kun, who is eager for money, strikes a deal with Lin, who is eager for a son.Every year, China's turbulent economic expansion tempts thousands of impoverished peasants to the prosperous region surrounding the capital of Beijing. The promise of higher wages and an attractive modern lifestyle prompts many a migrant to burn their bridges. One of the two million people who have recently moved to the area is pretty Liu Ping Guo and her husband An Kun. Having both found a job, they now earn enough to lead a modest life, even managing to save a little. Liu Ping Guo works as a masseuse at Gold Basin Foot Massage Palace owned by Lin Dong and his wife. Their childless employers are desperate to have a baby. Liu Ping Guo's boss, Lin Dong, shows her all the right moves to please her upwardly mobile clients and get better tips. During a party with her colleagues, Liu Ping Guo drinks too much. Taking advantage of her drun ken state, Lin Dong rapes her. An Kun, who works as a window cleaner, observes the assault. His jealousy and rage soon dissipates when he hits on the idea of blackmailing the rapist. As long as Lin Dong pays him and lets him sleep with Lin Dong's wife, he promises to remain silent. When Liu Ping Guo falls pregnant, her husband suspects Lin Dong to be the father. His attempt to squeeze more money out of his wife's employer ends in a fateful deal by which An Kun will get the money he demands and Lin Dong will get the child. Their wives are not consulted. Shortly after the birth, Liu Ping Guo starts working in Lin Dong's household as a nanny for the child she has had to give up. Before long, the situation escalates dramatically.

Director:  Li Yu
Writers:  Li Yu

Photos

Storyline

A look at modern-day life in China's capital centered on a ménage-a-quatre involving a young woman, her boss, her husband and her boss's wife. Massage girl Pingguo (Apple) (The stunning Fan Bingbing) lives in a cramped apartment with her bad-tempered window cleaner husband Kun (Tong Dawei), barely eking by on their miniscule pay. When Pingguo gets raped by her boss Lin (Tony Leung) one afternoon, Kun, who is washing the windows of the building, witnesses the act. The enraged Kun tries to get even first by (unsuccessfully) blackmailing Lin, then by sleeping with Lin's wife (Elaine Kam). The relationships get even more tangled when Pingguo discovers she's pregnant. With the paternity of the baby up in the air, Kun, who is eager for money, strikes a deal with Lin, who is eager for a son.Every year, China's turbulent economic expansion tempts thousands of impoverished peasants to the prosperous region surrounding the capital of Beijing. The promise of higher wages and an attractive modern lifestyle prompts many a migrant to burn their bridges. One of the two million people who have recently moved to the area is pretty Liu Ping Guo and her husband An Kun. Having both found a job, they now earn enough to lead a modest life, even managing to save a little. Liu Ping Guo works as a masseuse at Gold Basin Foot Massage Palace owned by Lin Dong and his wife. Their childless employers are desperate to have a baby. Liu Ping Guo's boss, Lin Dong, shows her all the right moves to please her upwardly mobile clients and get better tips. During a party with her colleagues, Liu Ping Guo drinks too much. Taking advantage of her drun ken state, Lin Dong rapes her. An Kun, who works as a window cleaner, observes the assault. His jealousy and rage soon dissipates when he hits on the idea of blackmailing the rapist. As long as Lin Dong pays him and lets him sleep with Lin Dong's wife, he promises to remain silent. When Liu Ping Guo falls pregnant, her husband suspects Lin Dong to be the father. His attempt to squeeze more money out of his wife's employer ends in a fateful deal by which An Kun will get the money he demands and Lin Dong will get the child. Their wives are not consulted. Shortly after the birth, Liu Ping Guo starts working in Lin Dong's household as a nanny for the child she has had to give up. Before long, the situation escalates dramatically.


Collections: Li Yu

Genres: Drama, Foreign, Romance

Details

Official Website: 
Country:   China
Language:  普通话
Release Date:  16 February 2007

Box Office

Company Credits

Production Companies:  Laurel Films, New Yorker Films

Technical Specs

Runtime:  1 h 52 min

Every year, China’s turbulent economic expansion tempts thousands of impoverished peasants to the prosperous region surrounding the capital of Beijing.

The promise of higher wages and an attractive modern lifestyle prompts many a migrant to burn their bridges. One of the two million people who have recently moved to the area is pretty Liu Ping Guo and her husband An Kun.

Lost in Beijing Movie Trailer

Lost in Beijing

Lost in Beijing (Chinese: 苹果; literally: “apple”) is a 2007 Chinese film directed by Li Yu and starring Tony Leung Ka-fai, Fan Bingbing, Tong Dawei, and Elaine Jin. It had its international premiere at the 2007 Berlin International Film Festival on February 16, 2007. Lost in Beijing is director Li Yu’s third feature film after the lesbian-themed Fish and Elephant (2002) and the drama Dam Street (2005).

Lost in Beijing was produced by Laurel Films, a small independent production company owned by Fang Li and based in Beijing, and is being released internationally by the French company Films Distribution. Distribution in the United States was picked up by New Yorker Films.

Like many films that touch on the underbelly of Chinese society (see for example, Li Yang’s Blind Shaft or Blind Mountain, or Wang Xiaoshuai’s Beijing Bicycle), Li Yu’s tale of prostitution, blackmail, and rape in modern-day Beijing has been plagued with censorship problems. The film also found controversy for what some critics described as “thumb-nosing gratuitous sex scenes.” After nearly a year of delays, the film was finally banned by Chinese authorities in January 2008.

Plot

Liu Pingguo (Fan Bingbing) and her husband, An Kun (Tong Dawei) are a young migrant couple from the northeast of China who have moved to Beijing for a better life. Pingguo and An Kun live in a dilapidated apartment eking out their existence working menial jobs. An Kun works as a window washer, while his wife works in the Golden Basin Massage Parlor as a foot masseuse. Golden Basin is owned and operated by Lin Dong (Tony Leung Ka-fai), an unabashed womanizer, and himself from Guangdong Province. His wife, Wang Mei (Elaine Jin) practices Chinese medicine. Very soon, the two couples find themselves headed for a collision course.

When Pingguo’s best friend, Xiao Mei (Zeng Meihuizi), assaults a customer, she is quickly fired by Lin Dong. Pingguo, wishing to commiserate, takes her friend out and promptly becomes drunk on bai jiu. Returning to the Golden Basin, she passes out in an empty office. Lin Dong, seeing the vulnerable Pingguo attempts to make a pass, which quickly turns into rape, a rape witnessed by the window washer, An Kun. Furious at the sight, An Kun begins a campaign of harassment against Lin Dong, defacing his Mercedes Benz, and attempting to blackmail him for ¥20,000. When Lin Dong ignores the furious husband, An Kun goes directly to Wang Mei, who rather than acquiescing, seduces the naive window washer.

Soon, it is discovered that Liu Pingguo is pregnant, though neither An Kun nor Lin Dong can be certain of who is the father. Lin Dong, however, sees in Pingguo an opportunity to make things right with his barren wife as well as to settle things with Pingguo and her husband once and for all. Soon, the two husbands have concocted a scheme wherein An Kun initially receives ¥20,000 for his mental suffering. If the child has Lin Dong’s blood type, he will go home with the massage-parlor owner and An Kun will receive ¥100,000. If however, the baby is An Kun’s, no money is exchanged, but Pingguo and An Kun keep the baby. Moreover, if Lin Dong again sleeps with Pingguo, half of his assets will go to Wang Mei in a divorce proceeding. During these negotiations, Pingguo remains conspicuously silent.

As the baby is carried to term, Lin Dong becomes more and more attached to the idea that he will at last be a father. When the baby is born however, An Kun discovers that it is indeed his child. Unable to turn down the money, he manages to convince Lin Dong that it is his son, allowing him to collect the ¥120,000. Although, seeing how happy Lin Dong is with the baby, An Kun grows increasingly jealous, at last resorting to a clumsy and ultimately doomed kidnapping. After being released (presumably by Wang Mei, who has decided to divorce her husband), An Kun attempts to “repurchase” his child, to which Lin Dong promptly refuses. Pingguo, who had moved into Lin Dong’s home after the birth as a nursemaid, at last has had enough. Quietly, she gathers the money that An Kun had returned, and taking her child, walks out the door. The film then ends as the two men, Lin Dong and An Kun, attempt to search for her, only to have their car break down on a busy Beijing highway… [wikipedia]