One of the most sensitive, powerful, beautiful, and greatest movies ever made. Leslie Cheung and Li Gong are a force to be reckoned with in Farewell My Concubine.
It is ages since I watched this and found it harder this time but also, as the previous poster commented,because I don't know as much as I would like about Chinese history/culture.
This was a movie that made me realise that I don't know enough about Chinese culture to recognise enough of its symbols and allusions. I came to the film with an open mind and an enthusiastic attitude but was soon mystified by much of what was going on (apart from the obvious love triangle, that is). The brutal scenes of the training of orphaned boys at the Beijing Opera reminded me of the cruel way in which so many art forms train young performers, from the castrati to ballet dancers ruining their feet. Some of it was almost unwatchable.
There was some kind of parallel happening between the opera plot and the movie's plot but it wasn't clear to me until the very end. I didn't care for the music at all...
A lovely movie. Reminds one of the glorious days of Leslie Cheung. A wonderful presentation set against an interesting time in Chinese history.
Beautiful and moving film
The true story of a Beijing Opera actor called Mei Lanfang
The conflict between Mei Lanfang and the wife of his beloved childhood friend.
Chen Kaige produced a film which got prized for in Europe with La Palme d'Or in Festival de Cannes (1993?).
For those who love chinese culture, chinese History, and Music.
I found this film very tedious and only managed to get thru about 40 mins before turning it off. Very disappointing as have enjoyed most Chinese films.
Quite a long, drawn out movie about the Beijing Opera covering the period 1924-1977. Several key years are indicated along the way such as 1924 warlord era, 1937-1945 war with Japan, 1948-1949 Communist Army takes over Beijing, 1966 start of The Cultural Revolution. The movie starts with children being groomed to become opera actors. The discipline is very strict and the training quite brutal. From the troupe, two stage brothers go on to take the lead roles of Master (Xiaolou Duan) and Concubine Yu (Dieyi Cheng) in the famous opera of the same name as this movie. If you like Chinese Opera & Music, you will like this movie.