Film gives tradition a modern twist

By Xu Fan ( China Daily ) Updated: 2016-01-07 07:46:53

Despite its apparently simple storyline, Little Door Gods has a serious message for people-to accept change or to reject it.

Set in two parallel worlds-heaven and a human town-the film is about two door gods' adventures sparked by a layoff threat, as there are too many celestial beings in heaven. (Crowding is a common problem for populous countries).

So in an attempt to revive declining human worship and to prove his worth, the younger god releases an evil "nian".

Fortunately, disaster is averted at the last moment by the god and his elder brother, and the duo also create hope for their own future.

The "good-triumphing-over-evil" tone of the movie gives it a commercial flavor typically seen in Hollywood titles.

For Wang, a founder of one-time executive of China's streaming giant, his eight-year experience overseas helped him give the movie a more global flavor, despite its very Chinese storyline and appeal.

Explaining what helped him bring the two strands together, Wang says: "I lived in the United States for many years, and then moved to France. So the greater the distance from to the motherland, the stronger the nostalgia for overseas Chinese like me," he says.

Wang says that in China's fast-growing movie market the future will see a blend of Hollywood standards and China's unique culture, tradition and history.

For critic Zhu Xuan, the narration and rhythm of the film make it look like a Hollywood title, but references to Chinese cuisine and Southeast China's folk dwellings make the film "familiar" to Chinese viewers.

The movie, financed by Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent, is one of the few domestic animation titles that got attention from all the country's top Internet behemoths.

Yu Zhou, the producer of the movie and also a former partner with Wang in, says that their IT backgrounds were what tempted the Internet giants to invest in the movie.

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