Experiencing Interruptions?


Xiao is a surly Chinese teenage boy who believes that he does not need a college education to achieve his dreams in life. His parents, meanwhile, are desperate to give their son a good education and a stable future.

To enter college, Xiao must pass the gaokao, China’s university entrance exam. He is vehemently opposed to taking the test, as he wants to pursue his passion in writing. This puts him on the warpath against his parents, government employees who he views as old fashioned and uninspiring.

Only one year is left to the gaokao, but Xiao is preoccupied with reading poetry by Tagore, a Bengali poet and visual artist, instead of preparing for the test. Xiao’s father storms Xiao’s room and takes away his books plus other items he deems distracting. While going through Xiao’s things, Xiao's father discovers his son’s favorite, a Tagore book, which reminds him of his own passionate youth. Noting that his son is drifting further from the family, Xiao’s father drafts an agreement committing to support his son’s passion for writing on the condition that he goes to college.

The agreement offers Xiao the much-needed hope of becoming a writer. He signs it and embarks on preparations for the gaokao. Meanwhile, Xiao’s father goes through his old documents revealing that he too had a passion for writing poems which he gave up in pursuit of a more conventional life. The story ends with a happy and united family as Xiao departs to sit for the gaokao.

  • James Peng
  • James Peng
  • James Peng
  • Thomas Yang
    Key Cast
  • Maoqi Zhang
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    7 minutes 12 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    November 15, 2021
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    Chinese, Mandarin Chinese
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - St. Georges School
Director Biography - James Peng

JAMES PENG (Director) is a student film director and screenwriter living in Massachusetts. He was born in Shenzhen China and moved with his parents to the states at age 14. He has a great passion for watching movies and making documentaries. He first got into filmmaking in elementary school where he would make short videos with his friend. In 2020, he worked on his first short film and is currently working on more.

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