Quando comecei a assistir mais filmes eu precisava de um caminho pra seguir e caí de cabeça em um monte…
Raise the Red Lantern
China in the 1920's. After her father's death, 19 year old Songlian is forced to marry the much older lord of a powerful family. With three wives already, each living in a separate house within the great castle, there is fierce competition for his attention and the privileges that are gained. This competition gets out of hand...
Film #16 of Project 90
” If you act well, you can fool other people; if you do it badly, you can only fool yourself.”
Zhang Yimou turns his lens toward a world where the happiness and sadness of women rely on the way men act, feel and think, but instead of putting one of those mighty men at the center of his film he bravely focuses on those unfortunate women and calmly shows us the inevitable tragedy of their life. Raise the Red Lantern is the sorrowful story of a group of women’s lives who are trapped in a life build of unfulfilled wishes, unspoken desires, jealousy, failure, humiliation and spoiled prides.
Yimou’s main success is that without getting…
For my two cents, Raise the Red Lantern is Zhang Yimou's best film, with the also excellent To Live running a very close second. Gong Li, playing the newly recruited fourth wife of a wealthy 1920s nobleman, is simply stunning, both in appearance and as a then up-and-coming actress. He Saifei also shines in her performance as the third wife and it is her heartbreaking story that really makes this film the masterpiece that it is.
Centered on the intrigues between the three younger wives and, to a lesser degree, an unlucky servant girl (perhaps the film's most tragic character) who soon finds herself far out of her league, the slowly evolving, but immaculately paced, plot is sure to tug at the heartstrings of even the most jaded of cinephiles. Beautifully shot and perfectly crafted, Raise the Red Lantern is simply a must-see film.
But in the end the choice of re-watching Raise the Red Lantern this weekend is simply due to the death of Roger Ebert, and I felt it appropriate to select one of his chosen Great Movies this time around. I'll also use three quotes from his first review of the movie, the first being the same one I used for my Push 10 notes;
Yimou uses the bold, bright colors of Ju Dou again this time; his film was shot in the classic three-strip Technicolor process, now abandoned by Hollywood, which allows a richness of reds and yellows…
Whistle stop #21, Taiwan (I know it's China, but this way we can sneak in another one from China), on:
I didn’t know anything of director Yimou Zhang going in to this viewing. It was only after that I realized that I had seen him before with the star studded Waxu film, Hero. While I appreciated Hero for its splendid cinematography, I just couldn’t really bite into its WireFu, blade flailing, ‘you disrespect the sword’ story that’s at the heart of Wuxia . I’m sure that’s just me, as I’ve never really been a fan of genre.
Raise the Red Lantern is something else entirely. While the cinematography is still gorgeous, it doesn’t take…
Now, the story in itself, though well told and better acted, would not have been enough for me to love this film. The life of a concubine just doesn't do much for me, Gong Li being magnificent aside.
But. Raise the Red Lantern is a heavywight contender in the category "best cinematography in the history of man". If pressed I'd say that Yimou had a finger in that as well, as his cinematographer hasn't shone this brightly since (but did get his "hands" on a Woody Allen film or two). On top of the cinematography the mise en scene is perfection brought to life, and it gives off this atmospheric sense of the past, with all it's…
I've not much time to write this, so my thoughts are going to be more disjointed than usual:
I was reminded of Bluebeard as I watched this, and ultimately, it did not fail to fulfill the expectation created by that connection. Like in the legend of Bluebeard, multiple generations of women are housed in a castle by a dominant patriarch (though unlike the legend, these women live here all at once). Like in the legend, there is a room that means death. Like in the legend, traditions rule the house. Expectations dictate behavior, and deviation means chaos.
Unlike in the legend, the women of this story are all present in the same time, and their interactions form the bulk of…
There is but one word to describe Raise the Red Lantern: Masterpiece.
Still on the subject of asian traditions and customs, this film adaptation packs a seething psychological punch that lingers and haunts like verses sung by a Chinese opera singer. Think Mean Girls meets Joy Luck Club among Chinese concubines to put it lightly---shot in Zhang Yimou's visually poetic eye. The young Gong Li is a presence to behold. It is a quiet yet deeply fascinating film with chock full of images that emphasize the sense of isolation in the system upon which the characters are subjected, if not imprisoned. It evokes a timeless feel such as the sadness that perpetuates in each frame, against each smudge of defiant reds.
Impressively mounted, but a bit schematic and clinical. Did Farewell My Concubine use these exact sets?
Amazing and stark.
Hugely stylized and restrained all at the same time, how?!
The film is stunningly beautiful to look at and it has a wonderful tone. But it left me a bit cold. Perhaps another viewing will improve my opinion.
on second watch its even better
Great film....just one setting and a handful of characters, all looking out for themselves. The cinematography is stunning, and the film becomes strangely hypnotic as it goes on, with shit getting pretty real towards the end.
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1187. An easy way of seeing how…