Director: Wang Xiaoshuai (2005)
The 1960s saw countless people leave China's big cities for poorer areas to support local industrial development.
In the early 1980s, however, the resurgence of urban economies made some of these migrants dream of home ... Shanghai Dreams is the story of one such Shanghai migrant family's yearning for home. The story is set in Guiyang, where the nineteen-year-old Qinghong has fallen in love with a local fellow named Xiaogen.
Qinghong's father, a stubborn engineer who is determined to take his family back to Shanghai, opposes his daughter's love affair and will not relent. Their love is destined for a bitter and tragic end, but who is the victim? The creator of a series of critically acclaimed films in the past decade (including Beijing Bicycle and So Close to Paradise), director Wang Xiaoshuai explores memories of his own childhood experiences for the first time in his latest film. Through the girl's tragic love story and that of the Shanghainese migrants, the film executes a heavy and sober portrait of a crucial period in modern Chinese history.
(CRI July 22, 2005)