Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains
Language: Mandarin with English Subtitles
Synopsis One family’s destiny unravels according to the rhythms of nature, the changing seasons, the life of a river…
Director’s Statement During the summer of 2016, I went back to my hometown to do research for my writing. Fuyang was always a quiet and uninspiring small town in my memory. But the longer I stayed, the more I was surprised by the constant transformations happening there. This humble place is increasingly overwhelmed by social and economic upheaval; as it was newly designated as a municipality of Hangzhou city, it will be the location of the next G20 Summit. I understood that I was lucky to witness this immense emotional transformation of the city. Floating along these currents and waves of change, every ordinary person and every average family has a profound connection to Fuyang’s surroundings, which inevitably affects one’s inner world. Their lives unfold slowly in the film as in a contemporary scroll painting, one which I call “Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains.”
Curators’ Notes This touching, innovative, and slow-paced family drama depicts the city of Fuyang in Hangzhou, a province located in Southeast China. Through telling a story about the lives of four brothers and their connections with their family members, the director locates the family drama within rivers and mountains, the circulation of four seasons, and the beautiful city environment.
The English title Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains originally refers to a scroll painting drawn by Gongwang Huang, which depicts the beautiful mountains and rivers of Fuchun in Fuyang. The visual language is astonishing. Director Xiaogang Gu uses long takes to capture the rivers, panning the camera from left to right to create the image of a scroll painting. The narrative is structured well, following the cycle of the four seasons. Xiaogang authentically depicts family life - both happiness and the confrontation of illness and death - which produces a sense of realism. Overall, this is an illuminating film that carries regional characteristics, situating its characters’ lives within a beautiful, transforming city in China’s Southeast.
Festivals & Awards
The 23rd Shanghai International Film Festival Film Channel Media Award
The 32nd China Film Golden Rooster Award best small and medium-sized feature film Nomination
The 10th Beijing International Film Festival the temple of heaven award Nomination