Kevin's Blog

90 后、随笔、感悟

The film "Zhou Chu Eliminates Three Evils" for ordinary people

I heard that this movie was accidentally discovered when someone posted a thread with the title: "How do you evaluate the movie 'Zhou Chu Eliminates Three Evils' starring Ruan Jingtian?" When such threads appear, it indicates that the movie has some value for discussion, and it may either be unsuccessful or exceed audience expectations. After a few days, I saw this movie on Douban again, and I was surprised by its rating of 8.4. In recent years, there have been very few movies on Douban that have scored above 8, so I was looking forward to it. I opened a certain app, selected seats, made payment, and completed the process smoothly.


The movie starts with a focus on a memorial service that is taking place. The person being mourned was someone from the underworld who was killed by a person named Guilinzi using a bomb. In order to avenge him, the deceased's boss publicly declared that he would kill Guilinzi. Guilinzi also managed to infiltrate the memorial service, and his presence was to kill the boss who threatened to kill him at the memorial service. The first gunfight takes place here, and Guilinzi's clean shots quickly take the boss's life. The image of the bullet piercing the boss's body shocked me. It was the first time I had seen such vivid red blood in a movie theater for a long time. After hearing the gunshots, the mobile police outside started to take action. After a three-second confrontation with Guilinzi, they engaged in a chase. The leader of the police team didn't seem to have his features described, to the point that I couldn't remember his name after watching the whole movie. In the chase scene between the police and the criminals, the police leader ended up with a serious injury, including an eye injury.

After watching the first segment in the cinema, I didn't understand Guilinzi's motive for killing. It was only after watching it a second time that I realized that the gang boss had publicly declared his intention to kill him, and in order to survive, Guilinzi had to strike first.


The movie enters the second part, which takes place four years later. After killing the gang boss, Guilinzi has to live in a run-down neighborhood to avoid being arrested by the police. His only relative is his grandmother, who has been living in a nursing home. In order to avoid the police, he hasn't visited his grandmother for four years, and only occasionally visits as a doctor from a pharmacy. One day, after receiving a call from the doctor, Guilinzi arranged to meet him. The doctor told him that his grandmother had an 18 cm tumor in her uterus and needed immediate surgery. The movie doesn't provide much description of the grandmother, but during the surgery, she unfortunately passed away. The doctor returned the money that Guilinzi had sent to his grandmother, as she had hardly spent any of it over the years, except for buying herself a pink electronic watch on her last birthday. This watch became Guilinzi's only keepsake.

Next is another scene, a conversation between the female doctor from the pharmacy and the doctor. They discuss a CT scan that shows stage 4 lung cancer, which means it is in the late stage, with at most six months to live. At first, it is not clear whether the CT scan is for the doctor himself or for Guilinzi. It seems that the director intentionally blurred this part, and at that moment, I associated the cancer with Guilinzi. My thoughts and the plot developed in the same way, as the doctor tells Guilinzi that he doesn't have much time left and hopes that he can leave with dignity. The pink watch shows how much Guilinzi loved his grandmother, and all these years he didn't want to be caught by the police because he didn't want to make her sad. After his grandmother's passing, he seems to have nothing worth protecting anymore. The doctor, who had been helping take care of his grandmother, also hopes that he will surrender and not end up dying in a dark corner like a rat.

When faced with the decision of surrendering or surviving, Guilinzi chooses to seek guidance by throwing a cup at Guan Yu. The result is 9 cups, meaning that the gods allow him to surrender. After a struggle in his mind, he goes to the police station to surrender. In the police station, the director uses a comedic approach to show that the police don't take surrendering individuals seriously, as they form a long queue. The kind of person Guilinzi is and his psychological profile are not described in much detail. But in the scene of him surrendering at the police station, when Guilinzi, who is in the queue of surrendering individuals, finds the nearest police officer and says, "I am here to surrender," the officer casually replies, "Oh, everyone here is here to surrender." When Guilinzi reveals his real name, Chen Guilin, the police still don't take him seriously, and this triggers his evil side. He sees that the wanted list on the wall has been covered by a new notice, and he tries to lift it to see if he is the number one wanted person. However, to his disappointment, the wanted list shows the first person as someone called "Hong Kong Boy," the second person is blank, and he is only ranked third, with half of his face covered. As someone who used to be in the underworld, the most intolerable thing is that no one recognizes him, which is even more of a blow than his own death. It is at this moment that he comes up with a plan to leave his mark. He wants to emulate the story of "Zhou Chu Eliminating Three Evils" and believes that only by killing the top two leaders on the wanted list can he be remembered by people.


He knows that the doctor who has been taking care of his grandmother must know the whereabouts of the two gang leaders. After questioning the doctor, he doesn't reveal their whereabouts. But Chen Guilin kidnaps the doctor's child to force him. At this point, I have already defined Guilinzi as a villain. The doctor is such a good person, taking care of your grandmother, and you are willing to kidnap her child. Although as an observer, I know that Guilinzi won't harm the child, the crime of kidnapping has been committed. It seems that the director deliberately tried to beautify a villain.

After pressuring the doctor, Guilinzi learns the whereabouts of the two gang leaders, and now it's time to carry out the plan to kill them. First, he finds Hong Kong Boy through a woman named Cheng Xiaomei. Hong Kong Boy had saved Cheng Xiaomei's mother from a gangster, and her mother married Hong Kong Boy. To repay Hong Kong Boy, she took his place in prison. Cheng Xiaomei had to stay by Hong Kong Boy's side in order to occasionally take care of her mother in prison. There is nothing worth mentioning about the process of killing Hong Kong Boy. The result is that after killing Hong Kong Boy and his henchmen, Guilinzi leaves his car to Cheng Xiaomei.

After saying goodbye to Xiaomei, Guilinzi embarks on a new journey, his eyes filled with determination. Following an address in an email, he arrives at a church, where he believes the second person he wants to kill is likely to be. The owner of the church is the leader of a cult, with dozens of brainwashed followers. When Guilinzi reveals his purpose for coming, he learns from him that the original wanted criminal is already dead. In this scene, Guilinzi himself is brainwashed by the cult leader and wants to leave behind his past sins and start a new life here. Later, due to an accident, Guilinzi is stabbed and buried by the cult members near the beach. Perhaps by luck, the buried Guilinzi doesn't die but manages to break free from the wooden box that imprisoned him. The resurrected Guilinzi then begins a massacre, but he gives the cult members a chance to live. Some of the cult members are too deeply brainwashed and don't wake up even in the face of death, becoming martyrs. It was the first time I saw such a detailed portrayal of a cult on the screen. The cult uses the tragic experiences of the victims to preach to them, asking them to give up everything in the world in order to be redeemed. This method may seem absurd, but for those who have lost all hope and are on a path of no return, it is indeed a lifeline. It reminded me of a quote I saw a few days ago: "If you haven't been deceived, it doesn't mean you're smarter than others, it just means that you haven't encountered a scam tailored for you."


The ending of this movie is also a reason why I think it's worth watching. We have seen scenes of executions on TV to some extent, but we are not aware of the detailed process. From the moment the prisoner leaves the prison to the last meal and the final execution stage, there are detailed shots of the process. I have witnessed an execution in a courtroom before, and it seemed that the death row inmates did not go gracefully. They seemed to be drugged from the moment they left the prison until the bullet pierced their heads. They died unconsciously, and once the forensic doctor confirmed their death, the hospital's vehicle would take them away.

When Guilinzi faces his impending death, he doesn't seem to be afraid, only shedding a few tears. I couldn't tell if it was because he didn't want to leave the world or because he didn't want to leave Xiaomei. I don't know if there are really people in real life who can face their own death so calmly.

I was somewhat surprised that this movie was released in mainland China, as the overall movie doesn't create a positive impact on the audience. For me, the movie leans more towards the gray area, where a small character wants to leave his mark in history by using violent means to kill so many people. Why? And who gave him the right to arbitrarily take away others' lives?

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