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East Asian Cinemas Symposium Film Series: "Spring in a Small Town"


Taking place in a ruined family compound after the war, Spring in a Small Town (Xiao cheng zhi chun, dir. Fei Mu, CHINA, 1948) tells the story of the once prosperous Dai family. The husband and patriarch, Dai Liyan is an invalid, and spends his days in the courtyard nostalgic for the past. His marriage to Zhou Yuwen has long been rendered loveless, though both still feel concern for the other. Liyan's young teenage sister Dai Xiu, meanwhile, is too young to remember the past, and stays cheerful and playful in the ruins of her home.

Into this dreary but unchanging existence comes Liyan's childhood friend Zhang Zhichen, a doctor from Shanghai and a former flame of Zhou Yuwen before she ever met her husband. The rest of the film details Zhou Yuwen's conflicting emotions between her love for Zhang, and her loyalty to her husband and his family.

Spring in a Small Town is the second part of a double feature being shown on Friday, February 12th at WEL 5.256. It will be shown around 3:30 after the 2:00 screening of Forget Love for Now.