Shot over two years, Gu Xiaogang’s debut feature drama chronicles a family sharing their daily lives and struggles in his hometown of Fuyang, China, which he has said “was always a quiet and uninspiring small town in my memories. But the longer I stayed, the more I was surprised by the constant transformations happening there.” As seasons change along the river, so the Yu family members are transformed.
The film opens at a birthday party where the aging Yu matriarch, her sons, and their children congregate. Granddaughter Guxi, uninterested in a traditional arranged marriage, wants to marry the son of a river-ferry captain, a position considered beneath the family by her mother. As time goes by, the clan faces one son’s mounting debt, another’s criminal behavior, threats from a local gang, and a reversal of fortunes—good for some, bad for others.
Named for a famous Chinese landscape painting by Huang Gongwang, Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains pays tribute to the power and beauty of nature. Calling it a “contemporary scroll painting,” Gu considers it the first installment of a planned trilogy.
Producer: Suey Chen, Megan Sung | Editor: Liu Xinzhu | Cinematographer: Yu Ninghui, Xu Deng | Screenwriter: Gu Xiaogang
Cast: Qian Youfa, Wang Fengjuan, Zhang Renliang, Zhang Guoying, Sun Zhangjian