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Xiao Shan Going Home

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Xiao Shan Going Home (1995)

58 min - Drama - 1 January 1995
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Xiao Shan, a temporary worker at the Hongyuan Restaurant, has just been fired by his boss Zhao Guoqing. Deciding to leave Beijing and returns to his home in Anyang, he goes to see a series of people from his hometown who have also been living in Beijing-construction workers, train ticket scalpers, university students, attendant, prostitutes-but no one wants to go back with him. Dispirited and confused, he searches out one after another of his old friends who are still in Beijing. Finally he leaves his wild long hair, the symbol of his life in the city, at a roadside barber stand as his offering to Beijing.

Director:  Jia Zhangke, Chiu Chak-piu
Writers:  贾樟柯
Stars:  Hongwei Wang

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Storyline

Xiao Shan, a temporary worker at the Hongyuan Restaurant, has just been fired by his boss Zhao Guoqing. Deciding to leave Beijing and returns to his home in Anyang, he goes to see a series of people from his hometown who have also been living in Beijing-construction workers, train ticket scalpers, university students, attendant, prostitutes-but no one wants to go back with him. Dispirited and confused, he searches out one after another of his old friends who are still in Beijing. Finally he leaves his wild long hair, the symbol of his life in the city, at a roadside barber stand as his offering to Beijing.


Collections: Chiu Chak-piu, Jia Zhangke

Genres: Drama

Details

Official Website: 
Country:   China
Language:  普通话
Release Date:  1 January 1995

Box Office

Company Credits

Production Companies: 

Technical Specs

Runtime:  0 h 58 min

Xiao Shan, a temporary worker at the Hongyuan Restaurant, has just been fired by his boss Zhao Guoqing.

Deciding to leave Beijing and returns to his home in Anyang, he goes to see a series of people from his hometown who have also been living in Beijing-construction workers, train ticket scalpers, university students, attendant, prostitutes-but no one wants to go back with him. Dispirited and confused, he searches out one after another of his old friends who are still in Beijing. Finally he leaves his wild long hair, the symbol of his life in the city, at a roadside barber stand as his offering to Beijing.

Xiao Shan Going Home Movie Trailer

Xiao Shan Going Home by Jia Zhangke, Chiu Chak-piu

Xiao Shan Going Home (Chinese: 小山回家; pinyin: Xiǎo Shān húi jiā) is a Chinese featurette directed by Jia Zhangke. The film, running around one hour in length, was made by Jia while he was attending the Beijing Film Academy and stars his friend, classmate, and now frequent collaborator, Wang Hongwei in the titular role.

The film follows a poor cook in Beijing as he tries to find his way back home for the Spring Festival. As one obstacle after another seems to appear before him, Xiao Shan soon realizes that his goal is moving ever further out of reach.

Reception

The film, made in 1995 while Jia was still in school, screened at the 1997 Hong Kong Independent Short Film & Video Awards, where it won the Grand Prix. This put Jia in touch with the European-trained cinematographer Yu Lik-wai (who has become one of Jia’s most important collaborators), and producer Li Kit Ming. The three men then began work on Jia’s feature film debut, Xiao Wu, which was completed in 1997.

Style

Like his later film Still Life, Xiao Shan Going Home uses intertitles seemingly divorced from the narrative, including one intertitle giving a resume-like listing of Xiao Shan’s career goals, while another lists the broadcast schedule for a television station after narrating to the audience Xiao Shan’s plan to go watch TV with a friend for the evening.

The film is also notable for its use of non-Mandarin dialects, including in the very first instance, where the audience is treated to the sound of Jia’s native Shanxi dialect. This is in contrast to most Chinese films that had, for the most part, followed government regulations to be dubbed into Standard Chinese. [wikipedia]