films seen
average score
China - 61 years old
Alive and kicking
more info

One of the directors who ushered in a new era of Chinese cinema. Modern romance in urban settings became Zhang's signature, a far cry from the films of China's fifth gen directors. Has a rich and impressive oeuvre worth exploring.


Spring Subway

Kaiwang Chuntian De Ditie
2002 / 93m - China
Spring Subway poster

Zhang does a magnificent job at both romantic and dramatic angles and delivers a beautifully shot and scored film, revolving around a lovable but ill-fated couple.

About Love

2005 / 102m - Japan
Romance - Anthology
About Love poster

If romance isn't your thing this anthology probably isn't going to persuade you, but within the genre this is definitely one of the better offerings out there.

Lost Indulgence

Mi Guo
2008 / 100m - China
Lost Indulgence poster

Some lovely visuals, a strong score and some neat little touches to lighten up the atmosphere from time to time and what you have is quality drama

Eternal Moment

Jiang Ai
2011 / 108m - China
Drama, Romance
Eternal Moment poster

Stylishly visualized, strongly acted and pleasantly diverse, Eternal Moment is another great film in Yibai Zhang's oeuvre

I Belonged to You

Cong Ni De Quan Shi Jie Lu Guo
2016 / 112m - China
I Belonged to You poster

Yibai Zhang's talent is beyond questioning. The stronger bits of his latest effort are stunning, dressed up in lush visuals and backed up by a strong soundtrack.

Run for Love

Zai Shijie De Zhongxin Huhuan Ai
2016 / 137m - China
Romance - Anthology
Run for Love poster

There are no weak shorts, one exceptional piece and enough variation to breeze through its 140 minutes running time.

Back In Time

Cong Cong Na Nian
2014 / 119m - China
Drama, Romance
Back In Time poster

The Longest Night in Shanghai

Yoru no Shanghai
2007 / 110m - China
Drama, Romance
The Longest Night in Shanghai poster

Curiosity Kills the Cat

Hao Qi Hai Shi Mao
2006 / 93m - China
Mystery, Crime
Curiosity Kills the Cat poster

A fine Yibai Zhang film, that illustrates the rise of Chinese cinema in the 00s pretty well. A film in a more urban setting, integrating stronger genre elements, but not without abandoning or overlooking its cinematic history. Nearly two decades later the quality is still present, it's just not quite as refreshing as it used to be.

Read all

Five people's lives get entangled when a man takes on a mistress and starts cheating on his wife. The setting is a huge apartment complex where the couple lives, thrown in the mix are a security guard, a nail artist, and a wandering girl who loves to take pictures with her cellphone. A. Simple marital issue quickly spirals out of control.

The urban setting is a nice change of pace, the performances are strong and the structure of the plot is quite fun (each character gets a chapter that deepens the understanding of the events). The styling could've used a little extra polish and none of the twists are too exciting, but overall, a very fun and worthy film.

My People, My Country

Wo He Wo De Zu Guo
2019 / 158m - China
Drama - Anthology
My People, My Country poster

There's a lot of flag-waving and chest-thumping going on here, but look past that and you'll find a decent anthology celebrating the achievements of the little people, helmed by some of China's prime directors. It was a little too sentimental and overdone in places, but it wasn't as terrible as I had initially feared it would be.

The Day We Lit Up the Sky

Ran Ye Shao Nian De Tian Kong
2021 / 108m - China
Comedy, Music
The Day We Lit Up the Sky poster

Disappointing. (Modern) dance flicks are hot property right now and it's clear China is in no position to let a fad like that pass. I don't belong to the target audience of films like this, but with Yibai Zhang and Yan Han helming the film I did have certain hopes and expectations going in. It's a change this turned out to be a low point for both directors.

Read all

A group of young failures are tired of being laughed at all the time. When they hear about a local dance festival, they want to enter the competition, for once committing to a goal. The problem is that they can't dance. They find a tutor, a young girl growing up believing she is the daughter of Sammi Cheng. With her help, they quickly improve, but time is running out and drama hides around every corner.

I'm not a dance expert, but even I could see the level of execution isn't very high here. Zhang and Han try to make up for it with light comedy, but that's a pretty poor solution. The music is also atrocious, the CG is subpar and though the ending of the film isn't quite as expected, it's still pretty cheesy. At least the two manage to shoot some pretty pictures and the performances aren't too bad, but that's not enough to salvage this film.