The gymnastics movie Jump! Ashin , starred Eddie Peng, is expected to release in Taiwan and mainland China in August. The Storyline of the movie:
Ashin grows up in a small town at Yilan. He joins the school gymnastic team at an early age. In order to become a national player, he never gives in to hard trainings. However, Ashin gradually loses his way in rebel time. He gives up gymnastics and joins the gang with his best friend, Pickle…
From the plot summary, this movie sounds like the Peaceful Warrior (minus Zen) + gangster. Actually one of the photos shows how Ashin used his high bar skill in gang fight(/rolling eyes). Here is one of the making-of vid. The movie has been creating a lot of buzz, and is anticipated to be a big hit for this summer. Fans sing praise of Peng, the actor, for the effort he put into playing gymnast, and comment that gymnastics is possibly the hardest sport. I hate the fact that general public marvel at the hardship involved in the gymnastics training after seeing an actor attempt some half-ass A-valued gymnastics elements in front of camera. (Usually I am capable of appreciating an actor working his butt off pretending to be a gymnast though. I “blame” my cynicism partially on all the MIOBI recap reading. BTW, if you haven’t read it yet, please do check it out. It is just toooo good. I guess the love-hate feeling towards those gym-theme movies and shows are universally shared by gymfans, wherever they are made. We know the REAL THING is a thousand times better than any of those show or movies. But as Spanny put it, “If this is all we can get, I'll take it. And I'll like it.”)
This movie is based on true events. The title character Ashin (Lin Yu-hsin) is director Lin Yu-hsien‘s older brother. Gymnast Yu-hsin had competed in major regional and international competitions representing Taiwan for over a decade since the 1990s, and is Asian Games gold medalist. During an interview, the director mentioned that he hopes to promote the sturdy and diligent spirit of gymnastics in the movie. Although having not seen the movie yet, I believe he actually has done a better job promoting gymnastics as a sport in his 2005 documentary “Jump! Boys”.
“Jump! Boys” is a Taiwanese documentary about of a group of boys who trained in gymnastics daily under Coach Lin Yu-hsin. The story is about seven boys-aged between six and nine years old- and then 33-year-old Coach Lin, and their intense training for an entire summer for an annual youth gymnastics competition. Some background on the documentary:
Director Lin visited his parents' home in Yilan during Lunar New Year. He saw that his older brother was training kids in gymnastics. Some of the boys were just six years old--so young that they ran home crying at the pain they experienced while training. Lin thought to himself that such hardship would surely keep these kids from ever coming back for more. To his surprise, the boys always showed up at the gym the following day. The indomitable spirit of these prepubescent boys touched Lin. He became consumed with discovering their secret: What kept these boys coming back, day after day?The question wasn’t answered directly in the documentary; but was mentioned in one interview, and also by the movie actor Peng -“the failure is an option, giving up is not.”
The documentary’s storytelling is brilliant. As the director explained, the story unfolded like a scripted sport drama. At the end of the documentary, the competition result brought a sense of closure and accomplishment to those gymnasts’ story. But their athletic career didn’t just end there. In a follow up interview earlier this year, the gymnasts in the documentary were shown still training under coach Lin, with 3 left and 2 new teammates joined.The team is looking to participate in the 2014 Nanjing YOG, and hopes to qualify for the 2016 Olympics.