Quitting (2002)


Critic Consensus: While Quitting is an honest and intimate look into the world of one man's struggle with drug addiction, the subject matter is better suited for the small screen.


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Movie Info

Following up on his award-winning opus Shower, Zhang Yang directs this biographical film concerning and starring Chinese film icon Jia Hong-Sheng, who starred in such groundbreaking works as Suzhou River and Frozen. Following initial professional success, Jia falls into a spiral of depression and drug abuse. Soon he drops out from Beijing's acting scene, withdraws from friends, and locks himself in his apartment listening to old records. His parents, who run a small theater troupe in a remote corner of Northeast China, are elated over their son's success but grow increasingly concerned with his anti-social behavior. Soon they, along with the entire population of the apartment building they live in, venture to Beijing hoping to get Jia out of his funk. Eventually, Jia is committed to a mental institution that makes the one in Titicut Follies look like a trip to Disneyland. This film was screened at the 2001 Toronto Film Festival.


Wang Tong
as Sister
Chai Xiurong
as Hongsheng's Mother
Shun Xing
as Jia's Roommate
Li Jie
as Hongsheng's Musician Friend
Zhang Yang
as Theater Director
An Bin
as Art Director of Quitting
Yu Baoshan
as Hospital Staff
Du Chunxia
as Hospital Staff
Chen Liang
as Hospital Staff
Zheng Pin
as Hospital Staff
Bai Yuhong
as Hospital Staff
Zhao Zuan
as Hospital Staff
Hao Chunqiu
as Patient
Cui Jinjia
as Patient
Zhao Jiuli
as Patient
Liu Tianran
as Patient
Lu Wei
as Patient
Liu Wu
as Patient
Wei Liyuan
as Patient
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Critic Reviews for Quitting

All Critics (44) | Top Critics (18)

Formally ambitious and emotionally engaging.

Feb 26, 2003

It helps that the central performers are experienced actors, and that they know their roles so well.

Dec 13, 2002 | Rating: 3/4

Ultimately engages less for its story of actorly existential despair than for its boundary-hopping formal innovations and glimpse into another kind of Chinese 'cultural revolution.'

Nov 22, 2002 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Intriguing in concept ... [and] just as compelling in execution.

Nov 22, 2002 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

A brave experiment.

Nov 15, 2002 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Daring and beautifully made.

Nov 14, 2002 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

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