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Devotion, love illustrated in ‘Ash is Purest White’



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I just finished watching the Jia Zhangke film “Ash is Purest White” and I loved what I watched the film loosely based on a true story. This drama and romance movie was an outstanding flick and kept me wanting more each and every moment.

The story followed a girl named Qiao (played by Tao Zhao) and her mobster boyfriend Bin (played by Fan Liao). This duo was the definition of a power couple in the northern Chinese city of Datong.

One night as they were driving on the streets, there was a mob of young guys following them on their motorbikes. In this scene, the mob severely beat up Bin, leaving Qiao with no other option but to take Bin’s gun and shoot it in the air as an attempt to scare the attackers away. 

She saved her boyfriend’s life but got put in jail for possession of the firearm since she claimed it was hers. She was only using it at protection of her love! Qiao was sentenced to roughly five years in jail but what alarming was her boyfriend never came to see her.

Trust me, I was probably more upset about that than she was. Failing to return any of her calls or messages, Qiao went on a quest to find her longtime lover once she was released. Unfortunately, she ultimately would find out that he had pursued a new love interest. 

Ash is Purest White
A scene from the movie, Ash is Purest White. Photo credit Cohem media Group

What viewers had to appreciate about her character in ‘Ash is the Purest White’ was that although seeing something like that was painful, Qiao stayed strong, held her own and demanded proper closure.

En route to looking for Bin, she ended up finessing a few men for money and even stole a motorcycle all in hopes of seeing Bin face to face. However, when she finally finds him, he doesn’t have it in him to tell her its over so she says it for him. 

What a sad moment that was. 

Years went by but soon Qiao finally received a call from Bin. When she meets up with him she finds him in a wheelchair. She did everything in her power to help him get back on his feet and eventually Qiao did bring him back to his old roots.

Yet again, her drive to be with Bin wasn’t the same as his to be with her. After being nursed back to himself, Bin left Qiao…again.

My goodness, I felt so bad for her since she was literally a ride or die for him and never got that in return. 

I am sure we can all relate to knowing that feeling to some extent.

Qiao was my favorite character in ‘Ash is Purest White’, she was very admirable for her strength and loyalty. I hope she goes on to find a man that treats her the way she deserves!

‘Ash is the Purest White’ definitely is worth the watch but spoiler alert — you will feel angry for her. I am such a sucker for a balanced relationship and always felt she was more into him than he was into her. 

She taught all the viewers what real love is. Not just loving someone on their good days but loving them when they can’t even love you back. That is unconditional love, and I hope we all get to experience that in this life.

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