The Big Road

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The Big Road
Chen Yanyan in the Big Road 1934.jpg
Chen Yen-yen in the Big Road with Zhang Yi
Directed by Sun Yu
Written by Sun Yu
Starring Jin Yan
Li Lili
Zheng Junli
Cinematography Hong Weilie
Distributed by

United States (DVD):

Cinema Epoch (dvd)
Release date
Running time
104 min
Country China
Language Mandarin Chinese

The Big Road (Chinese: 大路; pinyin: Dàlù), also known as The Highway, is a 1934 Chinese film directed by Sun Yu and starring Jin Yan and Li Lili. It is a silent film but with music and sound effects added post-production.[1] The film deals with a group of workers who are constructing a highway for use in the war against the Japanese.

The Big Road features the brief full-frontal nudity of a group of young men skinny-dipping in a river,[2] while being observed by two women,[3] a scene described as "very advanced for the time".[3]

The Big Road was named the 30th greatest Chinese film ever made by the Hong Kong Film Awards in 2004.[4]


Chen Yen-yen and Li Lilli in the film

Six cheerful young men work hard during the Second Sino-Japanese War constructing a highway which will enable the Chinese army to send men and logistics to the frontline against the Japanese. Deputy Hu, a hanjian, initially tries to bribe them, but later locks them up in a cell when they refuse to halt the construction and flee. Two girls from a local eating house who befriend them manages to rescue them, but one of the six men died in the process. The workers finish the highway on time, but end up sacrificing their lives after being gunned down by Japanese fighter aircraft once their work is completed.

Credited cast include[edit]

DVD release[edit]

The Big Road was released in the United States on Region 0 DVD on May 8, 2007 by Cinema Epoch. The disc featured English subtitles and also included Sun Yu's Queen of Sports.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ David Carter (2010). East Asian Cinema. Kamera Books. 
  2. ^ "Sinic Youth: Chinese Films Both Modern and Old Capture the Generation Gap - The Big Road (1934)". Expat CHN. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  3. ^ a b "The Chinese Mirror: A Journal of Chinese Film History - Retro Review: The Big Road". The Chinese Mirror. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  4. ^ "Welcome to the 24th Hong Kong Film Awards". 24th Annual Hong Kong Film Awards. Retrieved 2007-04-10. 

External links[edit]