I’m Fat and I’m Happy

Beijing (English) - - CONTENTS - Trans­lated by Re­becca Lou Edited by David Ball

Al­though be­ing fat is per­haps not a thing to cel­e­brate in the mod­ern age, life does not nec­es­sar­ily lose its colour just be­cause one gains a few pounds. So why not check out these films of big­ger peo­ple, per­haps they will make you see your­self in a dif­fer­ent light.

Bye-bye dough­nuts, milk tea, in­stant noo­dles, hot pot, chicken plates. Take them all away from me..." These are the lyrics from a re­cent song named Calo­ries, that en­cap­su­lates many peo­ple's dreams of los­ing weight. Speak­ing of “fat,” per­haps many peo­ple would like to travel back to the Tang Dy­nasty (AD 618–907) when be­ing large was con­sid­ered beau­ti­ful. Nowa­days, many peo­ple go to ex­tremes in con­trol­ling their diet, work­ing out and even re­sort­ing to go­ing un­der the knife. Al­though be­ing fat is per­haps not a thing to cel­e­brate in the mod­ern age, life does not nec­es­sar­ily lose its colour just be­cause one gains a few pounds. So why not check out these films of big­ger peo­ple, per­haps they will make you see your­self in a dif­fer­ent light.

Heavy­weight Agents Par­ing Up Fat Bud­dies (2018)

Se­cret agent “J” gets shot in the head dur­ing a high-level mis­sion, which dam­ages his in­tracra­nial hy­po­thal­a­mus. Dur­ing his re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, he grad­u­ally puts on three hun­dred pounds in weight and suf­fers from se­vere nar­colepsy. How­ever, J still thinks he is a spe­cial agent. Soon he ar­ranges an­other mis­sion to go to Ja­pan and re­trieve some se­cret doc­u­ments. Af­ter­wards, he opens the file and de­cides to pro­ceed with the hid­den mis­sion de­tailed in­side. J then faints and ends up in a Ja­panese hospi­tal where he teams up with an equally over­weight se­cu­rity guard to take down a drugs car­tel.

Di­rected by Bao Bei-er, and star­ring Wen Zhang, Guo Jingfei and oth­ers, Fat Bud­dies re­volves around a pair of big-boned, bum­bling cops who find them­selves at the heart of a drug traf­fick­ing case. The film fea­tures ac­tion and hi-tech el­e­ments usu­ally found in ac­tion movies, but presents the story with hu­mour. In cine­mas dur­ing this year's Na­tional Day hol­i­day, the movie is a light com­edy which has proved pop­u­lar with au­di­ences. Two over­weight agents bum­ble around as they try to com­plete their “mis­sion.” The di­rec­tor Bao s Bei-er ex­plained how the movie tells the story of a man with low self- es­teem: “Fat peo­ple are gen­er­ally soft and warm. I hope this movie shows their lovely side.”

Chang­ing Worlds I Feel Pretty (2018)

Renee is a young, witty and hu­mor­ous woman of av­er­age phys­i­cal at­trac­tive­ness and fit­ness, but she strug­gles with inse­cu­rity over her ap­pear­ance. Be­ing fat has caused her prob­lems through­out her life: she has been ig­nored in shops, over­looked by bar­tenders, and scared kids. She ad­mires slim girls and so one day wishes to be beau­ti­ful—but noth­ing hap­pens. The next day how­ever, Renee falls off her bike, hits her head and loses con­scious­ness. When she wakes, she has not changed phys­i­cally, but she believes she has be­come as beau­ti­ful as a fash­ion model. She hits on a man in the laun­drette, speaks con­fi­dently in in­ter­views and ap­proaches the world with a new found con­fi­dence. Her body shape how­ever is the same as be­fore and Renee is the only per­son in the world who believes she is skinny.

I Feel Pretty is a 2018 Amer­i­can com­edy film writ­ten and di­rected by Abby Kohn and Marc Sil­ver­stein, and star­ring Amy Schumer and Michelle Wil­liams. Amy Schumer, who plays Renee, is an Amer­i­can comedic ac­tress who is skilled at ap­proach­ing so­cial is­sues around gen­der, class, race, sex and body shape to un­cover the hid­den prej­u­dices and in­jus­tices cer­tain groups of peo­ple face. The movie avoids the trope of trum­pet­ing in­ner beauty over phys­i­cal ap­pear­ance. In­stead, it is an al­most rev­o­lu­tion­ary story which tells peo­ple to be ac­tive in chang­ing the world and the world's opin­ion of you. As is said in the movie, many peo­ple only see what they are lack­ing and over­look what they al­ready have. There­fore, use your con­fi­dence and im­press oth­ers with your kind­ness and per­son­al­ity and make life bet­ter for you and oth­ers.

Un­der­cover Agent Spy (2015)

Su­san Cooper is an unas­sum­ing, deskbound CIA an­a­lyst, and the un­sung hero be­hind the Agency's most dan­ger­ous mis­sions. But when her part­ner Bradley Fine falls off the grid and an­other top agent is com­pro­mised, she vol­un­teers to go deep un­der­cover

to in­fil­trate the world of a deadly arms dealer, and pre­vent a global disas­ter. Dur­ing her time in the field, Su­san un­cov­ers even more se­crets.

Di­rected by Paul Feig, and star­ring Melissa Mc­carthy, Jude Law and Ja­son Statham, the film can al­most pass for the ac­tion movie Casino Royale (2006). In fact, the di­rec­tor orig­i­nally got the idea to make a com­edy ver­sion of James Bond af­ter watch­ing Casino Royale. Su­san is far from the stun­ning­ly­gor­geous fe­male spies usu­ally found in ac­tion movies. She is a mid­dleaged woman who is not at­trac­tive in the con­ven­tional sense who man­ages to com­plete an im­pos­si­ble mis­sion. Melissa Mc­carthy shines in this clever ac­tion- com­edy which high­lights and fo­cuses on the role of women. This was the first time Ja­son Statham, who came to fame in Lock, Stock and Two Smok­ing Bar­rels (1998) and Snatch (2000), had starred in a com­edy. The movie was such a suc­cess that Paul Feig has said he plans to film a se­quel, with Melissa Mc­carthy and Ja­son Statham likely to reprise their roles and re­turn to the world of spies.

A Bite of Amer­ica Chef (2014)

Carl Casper is the head chef of a pop­u­lar Los An­ge­les restau­rant who quits his job when he can no longer stand his dom­i­neer­ing boss. He de­cides to take a long va­ca­tion and goes to Mi­ami to start a food truck busi­ness with his ex- wife, son and a friend. Work­ing from the food truck, Carl re- bonds with his son and ex- wife, learn­ing to value their re­la­tion­ship, and re­dis­cov­ers his ex­u­ber­ance and pas­sion for cook­ing.

Chef is writ­ten, di­rected and star­ring Jon Favreau, who ap­pears along­side Sofia Ver­gara, John Leguizamo and oth­ers. The movie tells a sim­ple story: a chef quits his job, trav­els down to the south­ern United States, op­er­ates a food truck on the street, re­dis­cov­ers him­self and man­ages to bond again with his son. Per­haps in or­der to de­scribe Carl's dull life, there is not much con­flict in the plot— even the fa­ther-son re­la­tion­ship is not par­tic­u­larly fo­cused. In­stead, most of the at­ten­tion goes to the gourmet food cooked un­der the guid­ance of or even per­son­ally by a pro­fes­sional chef. Be­cause of this, Chef gained the nick­name “A Bite of Amer­ica” amongst Chi­nese au­di­ences. Be­fore this movie, Jon Favreau was best known for play­ing Happy Ho­gan, Tony Stark's driver in the Iron Man se­ries. To sup­port their old friend, “Iron Man” Robert Downey Jr. and “Black Widow” Scar­lett Jo­hans­son also starred in Chef. The three old friends got to­gether again af­ter Iron Man 2, which be­came an­other high­light of the movie.

Long Live Friend­ship Big Hero 6 (2014)

Hiro Ha­mada is a 14-year- old ro­bot­ics prodigy liv­ing in the fu­tur­is­tic city of San Fran­sokyo who loves in­vent­ing ro­bots. En­cour­aged by his el­der brother Tadashi, Hiro en­rols in a ro­bot­ics fair headed by Pro­fes­sor Robert Cal­laghan at the San Fran­sokyo In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy. The mi­crobots Hiro presents at the fair win the praise of the au­di­ence, con­tes­tants and ex­am­in­ers. How­ever, a sud­den disas­ter de­stroys Hiro's dream as a fire breaks out and burns down the build­ing. Tadashi, rushes in to save Cal­laghan and is killed in the fire. Weeks later, feel­ing de­pressed over the death of his brother Tadashi, Hiro in­ad­ver­tently ac­ti­vates Bay­max, an in­flat­able health­care ro­bot that Tadashi cre­ated. To­gether, Hiro and Bay­max ac­ci­den­tally dis­cover that some­one has been mass-pro­duc­ing the mi­crobots which were thought to have been de­stroyed in the fire. Tadashi's friends Gogo, Wasabi, Honey Le­mon and Fred join the two, wear­ing ar­mour in­vented by Hiro, and form a high-tech su­per­hero team to com­bat the mys­te­ri­ous vil­lain.

Big Hero 6 was the first Dis­ney film to fea­ture Mar­vel Comic char­ac­ters, and is based on a se­ries of Ja­panese ac­tion sci-fi comics se­ri­alised from 1998. The film was di­rected by Don Hall and Chris Wil­liams and fea­tures the voices of Scott Ad­sit and Ryan Pot­ter in the lead roles. Al­though adapted from a comic of the same name, the movie only re­tains the strong Ja­panese style, while the char­ac­ters' names, back­grounds and per­son­al­i­ties as well as the sto­ry­line are com­pletely dif­fer­ent. How­ever, warm and cute

Bay­max fails to raise the bar of Mar­vel su­per­hero movies.

Amer­i­can Story; Chi­nese Flavour Kung Fu Panda (2008– 2016)

When talk­ing about the most fa­mous “fat” char­ac­ter on the big screen in re­cent years, the first im­age that comes to the minds of au­di­ences may well be a panda rather than a per­son. Kung Fu Panda pre­miered in the United States on June 6, 2008. Di­rected by John Steven­son and Mark Os­borne, the film fea­tures the voices of such Hol­ly­wood heavy­weights as Jack Black, Dustin Hoff­man, An­gelina Jolie, Lucy Liu and Jackie Chan. Set in an an­cient China pop­u­lated by an­thro­po­mor­phic talk­ing an­i­mals, the plot re­volves around a bum­bling panda named Po who as­pires to be­com­ing a kung fu mas­ter. As the film is set in China, Kung Fu Panda has a strong Chi­nese flavour. The tall, steep moun­tains make the film as charm­ing as a tra­di­tional Chi­nese land­scape paint­ing. Pan­das, the pro­to­type for Po, are China's na­tional trea­sure and are known through­out the world. The main char­ac­ters of mon­key, viper, man­tis and crane, echo the most fa­mous and dis­tinc­tive styles of tra­di­tional Chi­nese mar­tial arts, help­ing the film be­come a huge hit in China af­ter it pre­miered. Be­sides the in­ter­est­ing story and ex­cel­lent pro­duc­tion, many view­ers mar­velled at the way Dream­works told an Amer­i­can-style story us­ing Chi­nese cul­tural el­e­ments. In fact, it is hard to imag­ine that a film with such strong Chi­nese flavour could have been pro­duced by Hol­ly­wood, rather than in China.

In 2011 and 2016, Kung Fu Panda 2 and Kung Fu Panda 3 were re­leased. The two se­quels not only tell a more com­plete story of the pro­tag­o­nist Po, but also add shape to the sup­port­ing char­ac­ters and per­fectly strike a bal­ance be­tween ac­tion and com­edy. It is no­tice­able that com­pared with the first two purely Amer­i­can-made sto­ries, one-third of Kung Fu Panda 3 was made in China, as one of the film's co-pro­duc­ers was Ori­en­tal Dream­works. The com­pany was es­tab­lished in 2012 and 55% of its shares are con­trolled by Chi­nese share­hold­ers, with a first-round in­vest­ment of US$330 mil­lion. There are said to be an­other three se­quels to Kung Fu Panda in the works. Po has now man­aged to de­feat Tai Lung, Lord Shen and Kai, and found his bi­o­log­i­cal par­ents in his home­town as well as a life part­ner who is also fat. So, what will hap­pen to Po in the fu­ture?

The Trou­ble with Plas­tic Surgery 200 Pounds Beauty (2006)

Hanna Kang is an or­di­nary girl who yearns for love. Al­though she has an amaz­ing voice, be­ing over­weight and rather plain-look­ing, she can only be a ghost singer for Ammy, a fa­mous pop singer who ac­tu­ally lip syncs. Hanna helps Ammy be­come rich and fa­mous, but is un­able to win her re­spect. She also has a huge crush on Sang-jun, a di­rec­tor who ap­pre­ci­ates her voice. How­ever, she un­der­stands that Sang-jun will never like her be­cause of her ap­pear­ance and so de­cides to un­dergo in­ten­sive plas­tic surgery from head-to-toe. Af­ter Hanna leaves the hospi­tal, she has be­come in­cred­i­bly beau­ti­ful and slen­der. She then cre­ates a new iden­tity for her­self, Jenny, and par­tic­i­pates in an au­di­tion to be­come Ammy's ghost singer again, at­tract­ing the at­ten­tion of Sang-jun. Af­ter Hanna dis­ap­pears, Ammy quits singing and be­comes an ac­tress. Un­der the pres­sure of po­ten­tially be­ing re­placed, Ammy be­gins to in­ves­ti­gate Jenny…

200 Pounds Beauty is a South Korean ro­man­tic-com­edy mu­si­cal writ­ten and di­rected by Kim Yong-hwa and star­ring Kim Ah-joong and Joo Jin-mo, based on the Ja­panese manga Kanna's Big Suc­cess! The film is a bold adap­ta­tion of the orig­i­nal, and the story is less bizarre, in­stead fo­cus­ing on hu­mour to tell a thought-pro­vok­ing and even ironic story. Al­hough the beau­ti­ful Jenny does be­come a “win­ner,” for many view­ers, the over­weight Hanna is the one who re­ally un­der­stands the true mean­ing of life. The film was a crit­i­cal and com­mer­cial suc­cess, re­ceiv­ing sev­eral awards in­clud­ing Best Ac­tress for Kim Ah-joong at the 2007 Grand Bell Awards. “Maria,” the theme song sung by Kim Ah-joong, even reached the top of the bill­board for sev­eral con­sec­u­tive weeks.

A scene from Ifeel­pretty (2018)

A scene from Spy (2015)

A scene from Kung Fu Panda

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