Recent period piece:Beijing at a cross-roads: bicycles still dominating the roads, labyrinthine hutongs and migrants struggling to make ends meet. The bicycle is both symbolic and also a very real tool of social empowerment. Obvious allusions to The Bicycle Thieves, but works very well decontextualised as a study of the struggles to survive, be accepted and reach self-realisation in a competitive and hostile world.
What a bunch of delinquents, the characters feel very one-dimensional. In a way communicates passion. Determination. Survival instinct. But hard to connect with. Beijing bicycle symbol of freedom and independence. My heart goes to country boy Guei, the only one with any integrity.