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Gang Dream

Zhuo Kailuo

Release year: 2021

Run time: 160mins

Film type: Documentary


In 2014, Pan Jin, A city in Northeast China was in depression. Brother Qi and his followers went to collect the account but found nobody, Yang Yi shielded the GPS of the car and one of his friends just turned himself in. Yang Yi and Brother Qi are like birds of feathers, both of them stepped into society at around 16 or 17, they led the followers, collected the debt, solved problems, fought, and thrived, it was in the 90s of last century. Now, they are in their middle age. Every time in reminisce, they sigh about how things have changed. Yang Yi was sent to rehab, he wanted to set up a company to collect debt after release, while, Brother Qi was picked muscle of the right hand in a fight. Yang Yi wanted to gather all the brothers, but most of them were trying hard to make a living as the political situation was cracking down on gangsters, all the brothers fled helter-skelter leading a wandering life abandoned.


Director biography

Zhuo kailuo, born in Panjin, Liaoning province in 1981, graduated from the Photography Department of Lu Xun Academy of Fine Arts. He is currently teaching at the School of Visual Arts in the Lu Xun Academy of Fine Arts. Mainly engaged in the work of screenwriters and directors, but also the creation of documentaries. Now living and working in Shenyang.

Director's statement

In Northeast China, 'Thug' means people who muddle along the society, named as” rowdies”. at the end of 2014, I aligned my lens at Yang Yi, he was the so-called big boss of some local” thug”, while now he has nothing to do with staying at home all day. I wanted to shoot his life as a muddler, he said life is completely different from before when it was filled with fight and glory. Although the friendship and relations are still there. Yang Yi’s friends always went to his house, so, I was getting in touch with more and more thugs with the same experience, but different stories. Brother Qi is a friend of Yang Yi, who values relationships, and makes a living on collecting debt for others, when he took me to the base, the thick curtains, camera and the Statue of Guan Gong, (Chinese god of treasure,), the kind of atmosphere had puffed out a story. While all of the people inside are playing a game of gambling. The vendetta and daring were left behind as a history. With the development of society, Making a living is harder than leading gangsters, the problem of face and respect is always something they are considering, therefore, escapism is the solution for many of them. The movie was shot from 2014 to 2021, during which a lot of things happened, the thugs were disappearing, because they needed to survive in society. I had thought it would be a local gangster story of Northeast China, whereas, it turns out to be a portrait of “life is hard “.