with the bold text in the example below:

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Farewell My Concubine (Ba Wang Bie Ji) by Chen Kaige, 1993 (R)

with Leslie Cheung, Fengyi Zhang, Li Gong, Qi Lü, Da Ying, You Ge, Chun Li, Han Lei

A seemingly unshakable friendship between two Chinese opera stars gets put to the test in the face of war, a communist takeover, the Cultural Revolution and the intrusion of a woman who tempts both of them. In a plot that captures 50 years of Chinese history, the once-inseparable Duan Xiaolou (Zhang Fengyi) and Cheng Dieyi (Leslie Cheung) find themselves increasingly at odds after Xiaolou weds a lovely courtesan (Li Gong). Palme D'Or, Cannes Film Festival. Farewell My Concubine is one of the central works of the Fifth Generation movement that brought Chinese film directors to world attention.

This is a very loooooong movie. Yes, poetic, touching, but god damn long. I really loved Leslie Cheung and Fengyi Zhang, but Gong Li was overacting (or was I the only one feeling that way?). Perhaps the masterpiece tags all over the film poster built the expectations too high. How sad, for a story that was so beautiful and a tragedy so important to tell...

watch trailer:


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