Chinese disaster film "Cloudy Mountain," aiming to dominate the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday, celebrates rescue heroes and workers of national infrastructure projects who have saved lives during natural disasters.
Director Li Jun and leading cast members of "Cloudy Mountain" pose for a group photo at the premiere of the film in Beijing, Sept. 12, 2021. [Photo courtesy of China Film Co., Ltd.]
Actor Huang Zhizhong plays a retired soldier who specialized in constructing railways, while his son, played by actor Zhu Yilong, is a geological engineer. Set in a fictional town with a newly built tunnel, the story revolves around a series of natural disasters that follow a severe ground collapse. The father-son duo finds themselves struggling to prevent a catastrophe threatening the lives of the town's 160,000 residents.
Parts of the movie were shot in Guizhou province's Shuanghe Cave, the longest of its kind in Asia, at around 240 kilometers.
Zhu said, at the premiere held in Beijing on Sunday, that he now had a new appreciation for all the workers and soldiers who had played roles in building China's railways. "They could focus on a project for years, even giving up family reunions during the Spring Festival," he revealed. "Thanks to their dedication, more Chinese people can get home for family reunions faster and more conveniently via rail."
The premiere of the film, directed by Li Jun, was dedicated to the lives of "ordinary heroes."
Producer Fu Ruoqing, also the general manager of the China Film Group Corporation, also expressed his gratitude to railway construction soldiers and the workers of China Railway Construction Corporation Limited (CRCC). "Because of their heroic deeds and their standing up against natural disasters and emergencies, they have made the story of 'Cloudy Mountain' so real and so emotional."
An IMAX poster for "Cloudy Mountain." [Image courtesy of IMAX China]
Many key figures in the national infrastructure industry and real-life rescue heroes also attended the premiere of "Cloudy Mountain." Hu Dongpo from a CRCC rescue team for national tunnel project emergencies, said he had participated in more than 10 rescue missions ranging from tunnel collapses, coal mine floods, forest fires and flooding disasters. "Looking at the scenes in the film, I feel they are so real, and are like what I have experienced. It highlights China's infrastructure builders' spirit of rising to challenges and their willingness to sacrifice."
The film also resonated with railway construction veteran Zhang Xincheng, who witnessed many casualties, geographical disasters and accidents during the construction of the Chengdu-Kunming railway line in the 1960s. "I'm grateful this film depicts what hardships the railway construction soldiers had been through."
"Cloudy Mountain" will open on Sept. 17 and is leading the ticketing presales of all the films to be screened during the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday season. It is also expected to spark a hopeful cinema recovery after a lukewarm summer market.