Sunday, November 09, 2014

Sean Kelly

Reel Asian 2014: The Continent


Jiang He (Chen Bolin), Ma Haohan (Feng Shaofeng), and Hu Sheng (Gao Huayang) are three friends living on one of the most eastern islands of China.  With Jiang He set to begin a new teaching post on the west coast, the three set out on a cross-country road trip.  Along the way, Jiang He becomes infatuated with a call girl named Su Mi (May Wang), Ma Haohan meets up with his longtime pen pal Liu Yingying (Yolanda Yuan), and the group picks up a crazy hitchhiker named A Lü (Wallace Chung), who is obsessed with a satellite.

Directed by Chinese novelist and blogger Han Han, The Continent is a dramedy about these three friends going on a 3980 km road trip across the country.  The film is less about the final destination and more about the situations these friends find themselves in along the way.  While the initial narration of the film is done by Hu Sheng, the primarily focus of the film belongs to Jiang He and Ma Haohan, who dominate much of the action of the film.

It can be easy to call The Continent a comedy, since the three friends find themselves in many situations, which end up quite funny to watch.  In particular, there is an early scene in a hotel room and the crazy behaviour of the hitchhiker A Lü.  However, The Continent has just as many dramatic moments, including Ma Haohan’s meeting with his pen pal Liu Yingying, who reveals some surprising information.  Throughout the course of this road trip, these three men re-examine the state of their friendship, especially with one of them now working on the other end up the country.  Altogether, The Continent was a decent enough film.

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Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described über-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).