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Movie Review: Better Days (《少年的你》)

Hot 113798 views. 2020-3-8 17:08

Please remember to look up at the sky, even if you have to live in the gutter.


I guess this is what the movie is all about. The phrase perfectly applies to Chen Nian, a senior high school girl preparing for Gaokao but fell prey to school bullying, and Xiao Bei, a young gangster brought up by a single mother who dumped him and ran away with a man when he was only a few years old.

Just like two parallel straight lines that never meant to intersect crossed, Chen Nian and Xiao Bei met, by accident, and their lives were forever changed. They embraced each other to warm themselves and the other. Xiao Bei became Chen Nian’s bodyguard and protected her from being picked on by those bad school kids, and Chen Nian, on the other hand, softened Xiao Bei’s heart which had been stiffened by the cruelty of life. As time went by, some kind of mutual affection grew in their hearts although nothing sextual happened between them. In a way, they turned themselves into each other’s families, not lovers.

One day, Chen Nian, under provocation, accidentally killed the queen of the bullying kids. Xiao Bei, out of a strong sense of protection on the other hand, carefully schemed a plot by making alibi for Chen Nian in an attempt to make the police believe that he was actually the killer. Chen Nian compromised with Xiao Bei at first because she had such a strong wish that she could move on to live a better life as long as she did well in Gaokao. But they were only teenagers after all. The plots they had designed didn’t 100% convince the police who eventually found flaws in their stories, the so-called “truth”. The police officer repeatedly reached Chen Nian hoping that she could tell the truth. At last, Chen Nian, who had a good heart after all, told the truth and were sentenced for several years’ prison for accidental killing, which ended the movie.

As the movie left me with profound and lasting impression, I decided to write a review, something I’m not very good at.

As I started to write, I found it very hard to define this movie. You may see it as a movie that talks about school bully, or you may see it as a love story, or you may even see it as a crime drama. I don’t know what exactly it is. But it just grabs my heart tight somehow.

From the beginning to the end, the movie exudes a sense of depression. It starts with a school girl jumping to her death as a result of school bullying; next, for Chen Nian, another victim of school bullies, being intimidated and beaten had become part of her daily life. The more she struggled, the deeper she sank. As for Xiao Bei, even though he was living a completely different life from Chen Nian, the desperate tone that his life released was not unfamiliar.

Despite the dark feeling this movies offers, there’s always something warm and positive about it. I guess it’s the crystal clean hearts of this young couple despite all the hardships and tribulations life had to offer. Isn’t that a great inspiration for us all?

I noted that this movie has been a controversial one, with polarized comments. The critics who has given negative views claim that the director/producer is suspicious of plagiarism. To be honest, in the second half the movie when Xiao Bei began to create alibi for Chen Nian, it does remind me of another famous book - Journey under the midnight sun (《白夜行》) by Keigo Higashino (东野圭吾) which is a brilliant piece of work by the way. However, whether it does constitute a plagiarism, I’ll leave that up to the professionals because after all, I’m nothing more than a movie lover.

On the other hand, as for the movie itself, I really love it and shall offer my strong support. In my own opinion, this movie is definitely worth watching, maybe more than once.

Post comment Comment (1 replies)

Reply teadrinking 2020-3-8 22:31
Thanks for your share of the introduction of this movie. Though I have not watched it yet. A movie usually tells us of something and we can understand it from different angles. So we can hardly judge what kind of type it belongs to. For ordinary ones just have the time to be in that movie to think of something.

facelist doodle 涂鸦板

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