Guo Jianbo is a journalist specializing in social news. She lives together with her mother and daughter. Many reports she covered brought her a lot of pain and agony.
Her mother helps out in the local community after retirement. She is warm and friendly to all the residents and people in that community and regularly organizes singing competitions.
But there seems to be an invisible glass wall between Guo and her mother. Guo’s daughter grows up and develops her own personality in the cracks of that invisible screen. The family ties that bind the three together and the nature of the times in which they each grew up have seeped into their veins like a deadly poison.
Three generations. Three different contexts. Each of them has their own way of escaping from the reality around them, but they inevitably clash from time to time. After a particularly serious confrontation, the grandmother is admitted to hospital and peace returns to their lives.
Among all the anxiety and hurt brought about by Guo’s father, their experiences of the past and worries for the future, we also get a glimpse of reconciliation and a glimmer of hope.
Yang Lina is a leading figure in Chinese independent documentary. She has been the juror of many domestic and international film festivals. As a professional dancer and actress, she starred in Jia Zhangke’s Platform, which was nominated for the Golden Lion Award at Venice Film Festival. Her documentary Old Men was the first DV film made in China. It received the SCAM Prize at the Cinema du Reel Festival in France, the Award of Excellence at the Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival, and the Golden Pigeon and Jury Prize at the DOK Leipzig film festival. Her documentaries, Home Video, The Love of Mr. An, Let's Dance Together, Wild Grass and My Neighbors and Their Japanese Ghosts have been screened at a number of international festivals and events. She has now completed two films in her feature trilogy about women: Longing for the Rain was nominated for Hivos Tiger Award at the International Film Festival Rotterdam and Golden Horse Award for Best Supporting Actress at the 50th Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival. It was also screened in Young Cinema Competition at the Hong Kong International Film Festival and numerous other global cinematic events. Spring Tide was selected for the Taipei Golden Horse Film Project Promotion (FPP) projects.
Every individual is shaped by the era in which they live and the family that they have been born into. This film focuses on the relationship between mothers and daughters. It is a universal theme. But also, one about women.
The three generations represented in the film are ordinary people. They know each other intimately and their presence in each other’s lives is constant. My original intention when I set out to make this film was to show that every family might have a mother and a daughter like this.
The life experiences of people living together are worth discussing and sharing. Empathy leads to reflection. The family is the most basic social unit. The mother is at the heart of a family. We are both the mother and the daughter. The intimate relationship that binds mother and daughter together can be one of love and hate, but it is one we cannot escape from. Balancing that relationship and transforming those feelings into the essence of love is something I have thought about my whole life.
There are very few films discussing this theme in China. This film acts as a mirror, reflecting not only our worries, but also day-to-day themes, including warmth and hope.