The film tells the story of two families from about thirty years: Liu Yaojun, Wang Liyun and their son Liu Xing ('Xingxing') along with Shen Yingming, Li Haiyan, and son Shen Hao ('Like'). ) their. Haohao and Xingxing were born on the same day. Both families were initially close and worked in the same factory, but became alienated in the 1980s.
After Xingxing's death, who drowned while playing by the reservoir with Haohao and other children, Yaojun and Liyun moved to another province (Fujian) and adopted a 'new' boy they renamed. 'Xingxing', estranged by her adoptive parents. and left them as a teenager. Yingming and Haiyan got rich from real estate and Haohao became doctors.
When Haiyan was about to die, she invited Yaojun and Liyun back to their hometowns, where they were barely recognizable after so much urban development. In the end, Haohao told Xingxing's parents that he forced Xingxing to play in the reservoir because the other children were laughing at him and he felt ashamed. Following this revelation, Liu Yaojun and Wang Liyun received a phone call from their estranged, estranged son to say that he would come back to visit them and bring his new girlfriend.
The film depicts the journey of two families with non-chronological flashbacks explaining their lives. It talks about romance, getting married, having children and raising children (under the one-child policy), collective layoffs for economic reform, ups and downs in life, grief and many social changes in China. Kingdoms, leading to complex life experiences.