Video: “Man without money is trash. Marriage is a colossal-sum transaction.”
A video, filled with face-to-face interviews with single men and women in Beijing, sparks debate on China’s Internet. Even though the video serves as a trailer for a comedy film titled “A Big Deal,” literally “A Colossal-sum Transaction,” and should not be taken as a news documentary, many of the hard-hitting arguments have touched upon the problem of materialism that is believed to stem from China’s breakneck speed of economic growth, income disparity, rising cost of living and degenerating moral standards. Many of net users consider the video an accurate reflection of reality, and harshly denounced the mentality of women in the video. However, the video was also criticized by a small number of users as being one-dimensional and inflammatory.
Video with English subtitles provided by Ministry of Tofu
* Converting Chinese yuan to U.S. Dollar: for rough calculation, divide the value in Chinese yuan by 6. (The exact exchange rate should be 6.36 : 1)
* In 2010, the average annual salary in Beijing was 50,415 yuan, or about 4,201 yuan per month, according to statistics from Beijing’s municipal statistics bureau.
* Sister Furong: An Internet celebrity notorious for being narcissistic and shamelessly bold. Read the news story from City Weekend and the Wikipedia entry.
* Sister Feng: Another Internet celebrity that takes shamelessness to the next level. Read our post.
*Edison Chen: A Chinese Canadian celebrity heart-throb in Hong Kong’s showbiz whose career hit rock bottom after his sex photos circulated online. Read our post.
* 3rd/4th Ring Road: Ringroads that encircles the city of Beijing. Typically, the greater the number is, the farther away it is from the geographical center of the city.
* Lin Chi-ling: Taiwanese model/actress, regarded in the Greater China region as a sex symbol.
Photos of Lin Chi-ling
For more background of how marriage in China gets more materialistic, read Los Angeles Times’ story China’s housing boom spells trouble for boyfriends, our story Material greed of Chinese women turns Chinese men off; Western women become popular.
Selected comments from Sina Weibo
亮点精彩：When women propose that they are responsible for looking as pretty as a flower and men be responsible for making money and supporting a family, I want to ask them a question in reply, if she can no longer look as pretty as a flower, does it mean her man also no longer needs to make money and support family? Or he should find another one as pretty as a flower to support?
鱼鱼愿意: Women who won’t marry without an offer of hundreds of thousands yuan, and men who take offense as soon as women mention money, are equally insane. But, that woman, who says human beings, like animals, needs to mate for conditions, I admit what she says is a fact. If you don’t believe, watch Animal Planet.
刘原: Sigh. Men, with or without money, will probably get goose bumps after watching this.
许敏Smile: I feel so terrified after watching this. But this has exactly reflected the chaos of people’s values in today’s society.
李桐叶：It is indeed unaffordable to get a wife in big cities.
我是夜深: One of the young men in it nailed it. If women are bent on trading youth and good look for men’s material possessions, then her youth is too short-lived, as short as five years. After her youth runs out, what does she depend on?
菜头Sara：After watching it, I simply feel it is a bunch of idiots talking!
YINALIU刘逸娜：Just watched this in class and seriously this ruins the sanctity of a marriage. (Originally in English)
云端轻启祥瑞天降：“If you make a mere 2K a month, don’t expect your other half to have 36C breasts…” I wonder how much money are 36C breasts worth…
摸爬滚打四不像：If marriage is to trade money for a momentary “flower-like pretty look,” it would be better to roll in a sea of flowers with huge amounts of money, just like what the bespectacled man joked about.
9624-故我在: Not every woman who has particular requirements of life worships money. Not every man who has no money is incompetent. When true love comes along, nothing is a problem. A rewarding romantic relationship also needs a material base. Anyone that experienced it knows this. In the video, some women just made it sound too easy, whereas some men’s balls ache as soon as they are challenged!!!
秋池悠悠：F**k, it is full of ugly women. The uglier, the higher prices charged. It is clearly not in line with the laws of the market.
天佑中华A: One of them made a definitely sound point. If I had that much money, I would get a hooker every day, each day with a different one.
王康鹏: This is just the real world. Lucky that I realized these long ago. My real life experiences have taught me these unequivocally! Look, you guys, look! You even debated with me on the great subject of love versus bread last night!
xiufchenchen：Feeling bad. Who did this video? Was s/he damn blind and could only see women who judge men’s value by money? Men that are a bit poor just can’t find wives? This is not reality. Everyone has a shiny and bright side, and a dark side as well. Is doing this film for the sake of courting fame and fanning internet debate? So out of line!
万盛仙人版版：Failings of moral values.
davysh：Is it true that (we) can’t find someone to work hard together with in order to make life better?
朱杰MS：I feel refreshed after watching it. How great! How real! No more masks/disguise. No more face-saving even. This propels men to get rich and encourages women to change from wives to mistresses.
胶州城网: Why did they particularly find such women for interviews and no one else? There are many women who strive with men simply for the sake of love. After seeing women in this video, I feel my wife is practically the most beautiful woman in the world.
了无与无：No one in this world dislikes wealth. The twisted society has indeed created many twisted values. But most people can view money with reason.
峰宝的疯猴子：All the people interviewed in this video are too extreme. Quite a number of female friends around me, whose boyfriends have no house or car, live a happy and sweet life still.
丁丁澜：Not every woman is like that. My husband and I did not have anything when we got married. Even now, we still live with our parents. So what? We feel great about each other.