Bridging the gap with love, patience
Barry C Chung
Ocean Heaven, directed by Xue Xiaolu, revolves around the relationship between Wang Dafu (Wen Zhang) - a autistic young man - and his father Wang Xincheng (Jet Li).
Twenty-two-year-old Dafu displays the typical behaviour of an autistic adult: he repeats what others say and arranges objects over and over again.
Dafu, however, has inherited the gift of swimming from his deceased mother. In the water Dafu is like a fish, moving around with great versatility.
His father works as a technician at an aquarium and brings him to work so he can look after him. The two are inseparable. Wang get plenty of support from his boss and neighbours who understand the difficulties of raising a disabled child, especially as a single parent.
But Wang has a secret that he cannot come to terms with. The result may be catastrophic for Dafu.
Although thousands of mainlanders suffer from autism, the public know very little about this condition. Autism affects the brain, and patients have difficulties in social interaction and communication, and often engage in repetitive behaviour.
Few mainland movies delve into the lives of children with disabilities. Ocean Heaven explores the possibilities of overcoming imperfections and shows how people can be brought together through love and determination.
Ocean Heaven will open later this month