7.8/10
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20 user 59 critic

An Elephant Sitting Still (2018)

Da xiang xi di er zuo (original title)
Trailer
2:21 | Trailer
Four people in a Chinese city live through a complicated day as their lives intersect.

Director:

Bo Hu (as Qian Hu)

Writer:

Bo Hu
13 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Yu Zhang Yu Zhang ... Yu Cheng
Yuchang Peng ... Wei Bu
Uvin Wang ... Huang Ling (as Wang Yuwen)
Congxi Li Congxi Li ... Wang Jin
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Xiangrong Dong Xiangrong Dong ... Dean (as Xiang Rong Dong)
Jing Guo Jing Guo ... Dean's wife
Zhao-Yan Guo-Zhang Zhao-Yan Guo-Zhang ... Bu's father (as Guozhang ZhaoYan)
Miaomiao He Miaomiao He ... Cheng's friend's Mother
Ximan Huang Ximan Huang ... White dog's female owner
Wei Kong Wei Kong ... Jin's son-in-law
Yixin Kong Yixin Kong ... Jin's granddaughter
Binyuan Li Binyuan Li ... Scapler
Danyi Li Danyi Li ... Jin's daughter
Qing LI Qing LI ... White dog's male owner
Suyun Li Suyun Li ... Bu's mother
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Storyline

In the northern Chinese city of Manzhouli, they say there is an elephant that simply sits and ignores the world. Manzhouli becomes an obsession for the protagonists of this film, a longed-for escape from the downward spiral in which they find themselves. Among them is schoolboy Bu, on the run after pushing Shuai down the stairs, who was bullying him previously. Bu's classmate Ling has run away from her mother and fallen for the charms of her teacher. Shuai's older brother Cheng feels responsible for the suicide of a friend. And finally, along with many other characters whose fates are inextricably bound together, there's Mr. Wang, a sprightly pensioner whose son wants to offload him onto a home. In virtuoso visual compositions, the film tells the story of one single suspenseful day from dawn to dusk, when the train to Manzhouli is set to depart.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

China

Language:

Mandarin

Release Date:

8 March 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

An Elephant Sitting Still See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,854, 10 March 2019

Gross USA:

$32,556

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$39,599
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Dongchun Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital (5.1 Digital)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After finishing the movie, Hu Bo tragically committed suicide in October 2017 at the age of 29. This makes "An Elephant Sitting Still" the only feature film he directed in his lifetime. See more »

Goofs

When Wei Bu was packing his bags, the camera swayed from side to side. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Yu Cheng: He told me the other day. There is an elephant in Manzhouli. It sits there all day long. Perhaps some people keep stabbing it with forks. Or maybe it just enjoys sitting there. I don't know.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Deeply Human
24 February 2018 | by gonch-68899See all my reviews

Few debuts are this good. Throughout four hours, Hu Bei creates an overwhelminly human and sensitive film, creating characters to which we deeply sympathise and connect with. The more the film moves long, the more impactful it becomes, and soon enough even the smallest actions, the most simple scenes become huge, due to the sheer emotional investment the spectator has. This works mostly for these reasons: Bei's camera, which is always close to the characters, following them in long, some times astonishing shots; the actors, all of them astounding; the long running time, which gives time not just to explore each character, but also for the viewer to just spend time with these people, who we love to care about so deeply. Melancholic but not sad, deeply moving but never sentimental, An Elephant Sitting Still doesn't feel bigger than life: it feels like life, period. To call it a masterpiece would be an understatement.


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