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Little Angel

Hu Jie

Release year: 2003

Run time: 30 mins

Film type: Documentary


The name of the "little angel" was Zhou Hao. His father was criticized and beaten during the Cultural Revolution. Though he was born with a congenital intellectual disability, Zhou Hao's parents loved him very much, and he created a unique world with his unique talent for imitation.

Since he was a child, Zhou Hao attended church with his grandmother, so he was able to recite passages from the bible despite never having been to school. He believes sincerely in Christ and tries to persuade people to love each other, so everyone calls him a little angel. The little angel is now more than 30 years old, and he goes to church every Sunday. In rural house churches where many people are illiterate, Zhou Hao has become their preacher.

In this film, the camera closely observes the adult child, situating his behavior in the context of a real society lacking love and faith. The little angel's story is symbolic: it captures the concrete influence of the old political madness on an ordinary couple; however, it is this child who still retains innocence and fantasy, reflecting the spiritual deficiencies and the absurdity of secular society.


Director biography

Hu Jie is an independent historian, artist, and filmmaker. Born in Jinan, Shandong in 1958, he graduated from the Art College of the People’s Liberation Army. He works in oils and woodcuts from his lakeside studio in Nanjing. His films are among the most important documents of China’s unacknowledged “unoffcial history”, and include Looking for Lin Zhao’s Soul (2005), about a martyr-poet critic of Mao; and Though I Am Gone (2007), about an elite Beijing girls’ high school whose students murdered their headmaster at the beginning of the Cultural Revolution.