At midnight, the battle for the May 1st box office championship officially began.
The box office of ‘Hidden Dreams’ was still soaring with fierce momentum, steadily occupying the top position. In addition, the officially released ‘Reverse Hunting’ started to harvest money at the box office.
The first to make efforts were the audience and fans who participated in the screening. They posted their ticket stubs on Weibo and published their comments on the movie.
“It is beautiful! Beautiful! The duo of Ji Li and Fang Mo is very fresh, and there are plenty of reversals in the movie!”
“There are a few details in the movie that need to be studied carefully! The male protagonist speculated on the case as a suspect in the interrogation room, and the tension in that section was really amazing!”
“In fact, I’ve never chased after popular actors. This time, I went to watch for the director team and Fang Mo’s comeback. However, the male lead wasn’t panicked at all when acting against the old veterans. He is quite powerful.”
“I’ve watched many suspense dramas. The police were solving the case, but the male protagonist suddenly took the ‘suspect’ identity card for a reverse analysis. It is super thrilling!”
There were also many movie critics who published their own comments.
“I was looking forward to the combination of Rong Tong + Guan Xi, so I deliberately and cheekily asked for an invitation to the screening. Sure enough, the rhythm and plot of ‘Reverse Hunting’ didn’t disappoint me.”
“As the first movie where he was the acting male protagonist, Ji Li’s acting skills were unquestionable! Due to his character setting, his solo scenes depended on the details of the eyes. The scene with Fang Mo was equally exciting. Even if he didn’t speak during the group scene, the aura that is unique to the male protagonist alone was very eye-catching.”
“In addition, this setting actually surprised me. The following mentions spoilers, so be careful!”
“The first 30 minutes or so were full of the male protagonist’s personal scenes, as has always been the case for suspense movies. From the psychological shadow from the early homicide of his parents, the lack of empathy, the shock, calmness, and analysis after receiving the package, and the subtle eyes with which he observed the surroundings after attending the appointment, Ji Li portrayed his character’s heart very delicately.”
“The middle section revolves around the case itself, and the eyes of everyone are excellent in this section! The psychology of all seven guests are subtle and accurate. There are many close-up shots that are used for future foreshadowing. It is recommended that friends who are watching it for the first time should pay more attention here.”
“In the second half, from the creation of suspense to the initial revelation, Ji Li is interspersed into the plot. It can only be said that Screenwriter Guan Xi is amazing. He didn’t delay the main plot line, but he allowed the male protagonist’s charm to improve by several levels during the analysis of the case.”
“I won’t mention the final reversal. Everyone who has seen it will understand. The movie is very well conceived, and the story itself is good. In general, all four points of rhythm + plot + acting + soundtrack are in place, and it can be called an excellent movie.”
There were many short reviews that expressed the same good feelings.
“Ji Li is quite good at choosing scripts. The story behind the truth in ‘Reverse Hunting’ is very thought-provoking. I can feel that Ji Li’s original intention behind accepting the script was the integrity of the story.”
“Sometimes the truth in a suspense story isn’t complicated, but the story behind it is too painful, and the price for revealing the truth is too great!”
“The title of ‘Reverse Hunting’ has a double meaning. The murderer’s hunt is for another murder, while the male protagonist’s hunt is for the truth after the murder has occurred.”
“A friend asked me which one I would choose between ‘Hidden Dreams’ and ‘Reverse Hunting’. I want to say that in the world of adults, I don’t have to choose because both movies are worth watching!”
“In the former, you will sigh that Qin Yue’s acting skills have been highlighted, while in the latter, you will sigh at the overall plot. Of course, Ji Li’s acting also has highlights.”
Both movies controlled its duration to be within two hours. This was enough time to complete the entire storyline without making the audience feel that it was too lengthy.
If the first two days after a movie was released relied on fans, then from the third day onward, it became a real war of word of mouth.
The two movies ‘Hidden Dreams’ and ‘Reverse Hunting’ launched a fierce battle and pursuit. Their respective movie scheduling rates reached as far as May 25th and directly stole from most of the May Day movies.
The real-time box office updated every hour. It was either you beat me or I beat you. The situation of immortals fighting made everyone feel addicted.
The rating on the comprehensive website was released on the same day. ‘Hidden Dreams’ scored 8.6, while ‘Reverse Hunting’ scored slightly better with 8.8.
In fact, such a ratings gap was expected by everyone.
Guan Xi’s ability to create suspense was recognized as powerful, and there was the strong combination of him and Director Rong Tong. In the history of Chinese movies, if anyone dared to call them second, then no one would dare to be first.
Ever since ‘Reverse Hunting’ was released, it was recognized by netizens in terms of its plot. The discussion on the topic of ‘s*xual assault of children’ made it onto the hot search.
Both sides were chasing each other, and fans and movie fans were secretly competing. However, their way of expressing it was very friendly.
“Those who like to watch a whirlwind movie should watch ‘Hidden Dreams’ first. Those who like to watch the plot should watch ‘Reverse Hunting’ first.”
“The box office of ‘Reverse Hunting’ is about to rush up. Ji Li, rush and suppress Brother Yue!”
“Hunting movie fans, don’t be too happy. Our family is still at the top of the box office. Wanting to suppress Brother Yue? Do you want to ask him if the row of Best Actor trophies in his house agrees?”
The lively netizens actually opened a Weibo poll to guess who would treat the other for a meal as Ji Li mentioned.
A week after the release, the box office of the two movies exceeded one billion.
The producers of the two sides were happy to see this and started a two-way interaction that was rarely seen in movie history.
Compared to the producers who secretly poured dirty water on each other in private in order to compete for the box office, everyone was naturally happier to see this scene.
The fact that two movies with similar investment amounts could reach this step could be regarded as a win-win situation.
Of course, both movies would be released for at least one month. So the one who would win the box office in the end? That matter was still up for debate.
In mid-May, Ji Li and Qin Yue were shortlisted for Best Actor at the Yana International Film Festival for their work ‘Long Island Iced Tea.’
The two of them were about to appear on the international stage as Chinese actors at the film festival at the end of the month.
This matter caused a new hot search on Weibo, and the friendship between both groups of fans reached an unprecedented peak.
Ever since he finished cooperating with the publicity campaign of ‘Reverse Hunting’, Ji Li started preparations for a new job.
He stayed at home to study the script of the second part of ‘Special Operations.’ Once he finished participating in the Yana Film Festival, he would have to enter the crew and film non-stop.
First, there were works released. Then he harvested rewards for one work and finally, he accumulated a new work.
This rhythm was just right for Ji Li.
A reminder sound came from his WeChat. In their small group of three, Ji Yunqi suddenly appeared. “Ji Li, look at what I received?”
He immediately sent a photo which was the new script of ‘Special Operations.’
The story of the second part revolved around Ji Li’s Chen Xi, but Ji Li had read the whole script. Ji Yunqi’s Song Ran had some cameo scenes.
Ji Li temporarily put down the script and asked with a smile, “Your new movie is finished?”
“It was finished early this morning! I heard Hua Juan say that the final shortlist for the Yana International Film Festival is out. You and Teacher Qin Yue were both nominated. Congratulations!”
“You are worthy of being a friend certified by me, the cool kid. Bring me a trophy back so I can enjoy it.”
Ji Li leaned against the sofa. Snow Cake and Major General saw the opportunity and rushed up instantly to occupy a comfortable position.
“How can it be as easy as you say? Among the six people shortlisted, apart from Qin Yue and I, the other four actors are strong in terms of their movie and acting strength.”
Ji Yunqi sent a ‘thumbs up-you’re really good’ emoji. Then he pinged Yuan Yifei. “What about you? Don’t go missing like last time.”
Ji Li typed back, “Don’t bother him. Maybe he is busy filming.”
Director Zheng Anxing had spent two years preparing for a new movie, and Yuan Yifei was the male protagonist appointed by the director.
Ji Li and Ji Yunqi talked to each other for a while. Then after five or six minutes, Yuan Yifei suddenly appeared and even threw out a web link.
“Hey, have you seen this revelation? It just came out ten minutes ago, and it is about Qin Yue.”
Ji Li saw Yuan Yifei’s words and quickly clicked on the link. After a few seconds of loading, the title of the breaking news appeared.
[Busted! Qin Yue and Sun Li’s suspected relationship is exposed!]
Ji Li’s eyes froze slightly. He took a calm breath and looked at the specific content.
“Qin Yue’s new movie is currently being filmed overseas. Today, some netizens filmed Best Actress Sun Li visiting Qin Yue’s crew. It seems that their suspected relationship has been exposed!”
“The two collaborated on ‘The Awakening’ when they were newcomers 11 years ago and were once regarded as the best on-screen couple by netizens.”
“Recently, they partnered up again in the movie ‘Hidden Dreams’, breaking the rumors of their discord for many years. Now that she has been photographed visiting the set, does this confirm their relationship?”
“Best Actor + Best Actress is a powerful combination. She is a talented and beautiful woman, so don’t you think it is okay?”
In addition to the text introduction, there was a video taken by a netizen below.
In the video, Sun Li wore a black dress, drove to the parking lot outside the crew, and was personally greeted by Qi An. The two of them stayed at the door for a while before entering the crew’s studio one after another.
In addition, there was another video from inside the studio.
From the shooting angle, Qin Yue and Sun Li were very close. Sun Li had a bright smile on her face, and it seemed like they were chatting very happily.
No matter whether it was Qin Yue or Sun Li, they could be regarded as the ceiling for actors and actresses today.
They were too popular, and many fans had already started a melee under this revelation.
-What nonsense about love? Can’t an ordinary friend visit the set? Remove Brother Yue from this. Don’t make an appointment!
-Yes eyes! I think they are a good match. They are the ceiling of male and female actors!
-Ahhhh Mama, the BG couple I’m fascinated with is real!
-My Sister Li is beautiful alone! This man’s girlfriend fans, shut your stinky mouth! Who can’t like whom?
-The woman has started to hype again? Did Brother Yue put a knife to your master’s neck and beg her to come to visit?
-Fans on both sides shouldn’t be hostile. Qin Yue and Sun Li are around the same age and have similar strength. If this is true, then they can be blessed.
-Forget it! Isn’t Qin Yue’s male CP with JL for the past two years disgusting?
-Take away my family’s Ji Li from your mouth! It is fine if you love to be noisy, but don’t involve our baby.
-I’m a Yue fan, and I’ll leave it at this. I would rather Brother Yue be with the cute Ji Li than a hypocritical woman like Sun Li!
TL: Advance chapters are available over on my Patreon. You can go check out the details on my Patreon page.