Educational Movie

The Piano in a Factory An Elegy for an Era

Every moving chant evokes an unforgettable memory, and every rustic nostalgia always evokes the mourning of a group. The Piano of Steel” tells the story of Chen Guilin, a worker in the old days, who builds a piano for his daughter with his workmates in order to get the custody of his daughter, which is also about the process of pursuing dreams of small people like them. The process of building a piano is a remnant of the curtain of prosperity or an elegy about the burning years of passion.

The music adds to the soul of the film, not only with its beauty and humor, but also as an outward expression of the characters’ inner emotions, as the last cry of the working class after their youthful days were shaken by the tide of the new era. The image of a derelict factory, a barren meadow, and a group of laid-off workers who are out of step with the times should be a sad feeling, but the combination with the light-hearted and cheerful Soviet music weakens the dreary atmosphere, and there is just a touch of sadness under the witty and humorous atmosphere.

This is just like the workers under the reform trend of the new era, who were the founders of the early stage of industrial development, which were once their passionate years, their youth, and the source of their life. But all this has disappeared without a trace under the tide of the new era, becoming their eternal past. Chen Guilin, after a burst of anger to his daughter, took advantage of the soothing music to soothe the tense atmosphere, which is also his inner emotions, both under the embarrassment of life helplessness, but also the love of his daughter’s father, no matter how difficult life is, but also to cheer up, optimistic face.

The lines of the film are quite interesting, showing the helplessness of the small people in life on the one hand, and the pursuit of the ideal of life on the other. Chen Guilin’s every sentence has an ironic meaning in it, such as: “Beethoven moncler”, “industry”, originally a small person, but from time to time use the vocabulary of the big man, seemingly incongruous statements, hidden under the aspiration for the ideal life. There is a flirtatious way of expressing it, the more flirtatious it seems indifferent, the more the heart cares.

When the piano is built, Xiao Yuan asks Chen Guilin, “What kind of music do you want to listen to”, and he says, “Something simple”. When the piano was finished, they weren’t too happy because his undulating heart couldn’t make any ripples anymore. It was a reversion to his life, to the most real, to the most simple. The root of all this is life, is the reality, that once good is no longer, that the best times of the workers will eventually fade from life.

The piano is the clue of the whole film. It is not only a bargaining chip for Chen Guilin and his wife to fight for the custody of their daughter, but also a memorial to the old factory days for Chen Guilin and his fellow workers. Their “obsession” with building the piano is not only out of friendship, but also out of remembrance of their own glorious tradition and resistance to the pollution of reality.

The small group of people in “The Harp of Steel” have seen their time come to an end, but no one is willing to quit willingly. Their past glory represents their strength, and an innate feeling of “root” makes them unable to accept their fate. Thus, “building a zither” became an unspoken agreement, an opportunity to awaken a long-dormant passion in their hearts, a performance to defend their dignity. In the process of building the piano, they felt the passion they had once felt again and again, and the splattered iron filings were their inner home.

It is a nostalgic film, the Russian soundtrack, the rustic and trendy characters, the old and abandoned factory buildings, the towering chimneys, and even the formulaic speeches, all in remembrance of a bygone era. The characters’ northeastern accents and northeastern-style jokes do not put people off, but quickly pull them into the life of the northeast in the 1990s. The character of Chen Guilin, the main character, matches 99.9% with the northeastern people of the 90s. Whether it’s a divorce when you say that the family TV what there is a need for you to move away, or in order to let the daughter practice piano to the female teacher to send skin care products, or to help his brother advance gambling money to play the account, or in order to let the high workers to draw drawings to fry fish to send her, but also to fool him, etc., these are the background of that era, the northeastern people in dire straits, the smoothness of the world in the details of the portrayal of extremely detailed.

Each character in the film symbolizes a loss, and all the results are not the original dream, including the “steel piano” which should not have appeared at all. The film is like an elegy for the times, revealing an endless sentimentality.

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