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Down memory lane

By Xu Lin | China Daily | Updated: 2020-08-26 08:42
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Wang Cunjin and his son, Wang Zixuan, are presented with a best performance award at the short video film festival held by videosharing platform Douyin last year, by director Ning Hao (left) and director-actor Xu Zheng (right). [Photo provided to China Daily]

A black-and-white TV set is broadcasting a scene with Monkey King from Journey to the West, a series first aired in the 1980s and adapted from a classical Chinese novel of the same name.

Back then, getting a good TV signal was not always guaranteed and aerials often had to be adjusted by hand to get watchable transmission.

Now the scene is being repeated as we step back in time. Wang Cunjin carefully turns a long pole attached to an old-fashioned TV aerial in the yard and holds it to get a strong and stable signal.

The black-and-white short video showing this long-lost ritual, filmed by Wang, which went viral last summer, is only one of his works that arouse feelings of nostalgia for the 1980s and '90s among Chinese internet users. They comment that these short videos made them "time travel" to the old days.

"It's all about authenticity, so that you can touch the viewers instantly. These videos make them recall their pleasant childhood memories and happiness," says Wang, 36, living in Jining city, Shandong province. He has over 1.27 million fans on short-video platform Kuaishou.

"It's a period when people's material living standards were lower than nowadays, but they knew that happiness was found in contentment and pressures were also lower."

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