Director Cui Zi'en tells a melodramatic and sad family story in "Withered in the Blooming Season" (Waterbearer Film) and in doing so gives homage to the great French filmmaker Jean Cocteau. A twin brother and sister are involved in a relationship and they decide that they want to spend the rest of their lives together. Feng (the brother) discovers that his sister Wen is pregnant with his child, he asks his gay friend Le Le into taking the baby as his own. The twins are young. Feng is a high school student and he and Wen share everything including a bedroom. His attraction to his sister is obsessive and he truly loves her, However Wen is maturing more quickly than her brother and she is ready to make a life for herself. Feng decides to involve his gay best friend into their relationship because he would be able to control it but he loses control of his own emotions and his plan doesn't work to his expectations and he discovers that he is in love with Le Le. Dysfunction only mildly describes this family situation. We watch as our three characters try to gain hold of their lives and the power that attraction has. Cui Zi'en is noted for controversial films and that is probably the reason that he is regarded as one of China's most important young filmmakers. Although far from perfect, "Withered in the Blooming Season" gives a great deal to think about.
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