A gangster on the run sacrifices everything for his family and a woman he meets while on the lam.
A gangster on the run sacrifices everything for his family and a woman he meets while on the lam.
Nan Fang Che Zhan De Ju Hui, 남방차참적취회, Перестрелка на гусином озере
An invigorating, poetic, and discretely brilliant Chinese noir that adds up to less than the sum of its parts, Diao Yinan’s “The Wild Goose Lake” can’t help but feel like a mild comedown from the director’s Berlinale-winning 2014, “Black Coal, Thin Ice.” To some degree, that disappointment may have been inevitable, as Yinan’s five-year-old masterpiece tapped into the kind of dark magic that’s difficult to conjure twice. Alas, it doesn’t necessarily help that Diao’s first feature in five years treads similar territory as his previous work, as he once again steers his bleak genius towards the bitter indignities of China’s “second-tier” cities, weaving a sibylline crime story of life and death through a world that’s moving too fast to keep…
“Ever thought of running away?” “Where to?”
This exchange comes late in The Wild Goose Lake, the latest film from stylish Chinese genre filmmaker Diao Yinan (previously awarded with Berlinale’s 2014 Golden Bear for his art film-inflected neo-noir Black Coal, Thin Ice), and within the film’s noir milieu the line fits. It’s shared between a gangster on the run and the call girl companion he’s been forcefully entwined with, however a strange combination of filmic tools means it comes tinged with a unique, near-cosmic portent, revealing even more so than his last film a much richer, wounded existentialism about two lonely, desperate people simply surviving in a dilapidated, contemporary Mainland China.
Manhunt in a police state. Very well-imagined with a strong sense of Langian paranoia, a rich textured underground world and good outbursts of violence. With every film Diao Yinan gets better into using pulp to comment on current China.
Seijun Suzuki 2020
BIG cinnamon tography!
Wild Goose Lake exists in a turbulent location characterised by changing allegiances and unexpected treacheries together with a narrative which flashes between perspectives and interconnected timelines. It commences with heavy rainfall on an atmospheric neon illuminated street where Zhou Zenong, a gang leader is fleeing from both the underworld and law enforcement officers, and with director Yi’nan Diao immediately foregoing any thematic richness in favour of a more extensive exercise in genre.
The film continually colours both its figures of law and lawlessness with tones of neutrality which sees them disseminated into a comfortless territory which observers them conversing with one another while gazing moodily into the shadows. The look of the film is irresistible due to the awe-inspiring photography of Dong Jingsong, and any misgivings regarding the storyline are nearly rinsed away with a succession of orchestrated action sequences which evoke admiration through his impressive cinematography.
Well, from time to time, I encounter a movie that checks two boxes on one. On one hand, it shows the beauty that is finding out an amazing movie going in blind. And second of all, it goes to proof why sometimes, adding to your watch list weird films from people in this page is the way to go (*wink* *wink*). In that regard, all the big props to Steph_H for (unintentionally) introducing me to this film with her review!
So what is it about this movie that I love so much? Well, funnily enough, this flick shares a lot of similarities with my previous reviewed movie here, "Portrait Of A Lady On Fire," especially on a technical level...
The Wild Goose Lake is a stylish crime thriller. It follows the last days of a criminal, telling the story with beautiful shots, an inconsistent tension, and a specific dialect. Through the saturated colours of the night, The Wild Goose Lake presents death as inevitable. The gore and violence is well executed, nasty and occasionally inventive. The Wild Goose Lake is not a deep examination of anything, but it is full of characters you can invest in. Some are unlikely to be impressed, but personally I was gripped all the way through.
From the grease-slicked streets running down back-alley noodle shops to the garish pink neon hanging over every building, The Wild Goose Lake is an assault on the eyes as color gradients and reflective surfaces paint a world so ravishingly vivid.
But the people who inhabit this world? Not so much. Dead bodies are not so different from living ones as the former investigate the latter. Everyone is small cog in the machine that is this film; but unlike most movie characters they know this, and they are resigned to whatever fate befalls them.
Surreal encounters of fate invoke feelings almost tinging that of magical realism; how else can you explain walking through a crowd dancing to "Rasputin" with soles that…
A few days ago, John Carpenter described directing as the art of deciding what to emphasize. What Diao Yinan argues is: what if it isn't? What if you just throw up a bunch of neon-slicked images on screen without much regard to emphasis or advancing narrative or clarity or character psychology? But without the rigour we've come to expect? And then gauze the whole thing in a putatively respectable sheen but throw in a few gonzo moments that might play in a Takashi Miike movie but mostly make you long for the Miike version of this movie? (Think of what he'd make of the zoo. And he'd understand the physics of how an umbrella through a body works.) Or Johnnie…
What a fresh captivating feast for the eyes! Utterly ravishing yet gloomy, whimsical yet unrelenting, seductive yet bleakest to the point where all you want from this movie is just to end. Don't get me wrong, everything that comes from this movie is a complete alluring visual treat, but I just thought this movie is insufferably exhausting. All you were rooting for is for the main character to escape his inevitable destiny, rambling his way through the dark landscape of hooligans, evading the unabashed money-provoked authorities, and dealing with the enigmatic woman who cryptically evoked a newly found emotions and turmoils from the lead's mind and journey.
Love this movie just to some extent due to the exhaustion and low-key got bored at some point. However, there's no denying in the saying that this movie holds one of the most alluring technical achievements in this contemporary cinema.
The grand finale of this year’s film festival, and though I had a damn good time overall, it pains me to say it ends with a film that disappointed me. Maybe it was expectations that weren’t met, but The Wild Goose Lake sadly didn’t connect with me much. Still stuff around I dug, the stylistic decisions with lighting and whatnot were cool, the sporadic bits of action were very well-done, and I liked the two lead actors. Besides that though, not much was done for me. This was to me a film either in need of a second edit, or a restructure of the kind of film it was. (That doesn’t mean getting rid of…
fotografia MUITO massa. trilha sonora muito boa. o filme só tem dois problemas: deixa pontos da narrativa mal amarrados no roteiro, o que faz com que o meio do filme tenha uma articulação muito confusa e as cenas de ação não nenhum refino, são bobinhas e até meio grotescas.
Bacurau and The Wild Goose Lake were the last films I saw in theaters back in March, so revisiting Diao Yinan’s neo-noir qualified as a nostalgic experience.
Rewatching with proper expectations definitely allowed me to appreciate the plot more than I had initially. Glacial is one word to describe the pace, but that’s misleading. The Wild Goose Lake is essentially two stories - a multi-thread “how did we get here” looping back to the opening scene, then the everything-goes-wrong aftermath - and both halves marinate in sleek sordid atmosphere.
In a vacuum, The Wild Goose Lake is incredibly familiar as noir: femme fatale, man on the run, shifting alliances and imminent betrayals. Yet there’s a Melville-esque mundanity to the criminal…
Algunos directores chinos de la última década han conseguido renovar el cine negro con una serie de thrillers escalofriantes que realzaron un género que parecía agotado. Diao Yinan, director de Black Coal, es uno de los máximos exponentes de esta corriente. Su cuarto film El Lago del Ganso Salvaje nos adentra a una atmósfera pesadillesca a través de una historia de gangsters, violencia y corrupción. Una odisea nocturna y enigmática que encuentra en las bases del noir, un punto de fuga hacia lo insólito y perspicaz, con una maestría técnica brillante para inmiscuirnos en su historia sofocante y hacernos experimentar la turbiedad del asunto. Una película alabada por Quentin Tarantino durante su estreno en el Festival de Cannes y que advirtió a Diao Yinan como una de las miradas más promisorias de la actualidad.
gooses are wild. best movie of the year?
there's something really funny about a manhunt in china for a guy who's pretty much hiding in plain sight. i think you know what i'm getting at haha.
Although another Chinese gangsta story film sounds very uninteresting, we cannot deny the top-class direction here.
Rough movie to watch when you're struggling to stay awake (not the movie's fault). Compelling but despite its plottiness and style to spare it left me feeling a bit like I'm looking at a blank slate. Diao Yi’nan sustains a really interesting tone by inserting jarring moments of deadpan comedy and sudden violence almost in alternation.
Just like Black Coal, Thin Ice I thought this was less than a sum of its parts.
Still, some really cool scenes and general tonal darkness but coupled with a fair amount of tedium
All style and no substance, but what style!!!
Didn’t grab me as much as I hoped it would but this has some awesome cinematography and action sequences. Reminds me of Michael Mann a lot in some ways
Im a sucker for Asian crime thrillers, and this one has all the right ingredients to make a very well made and entertaining film. The way in which this is edited and directed is probably its biggest accomplishment and theres scenes that stick out in my head immediately when I think back on this. Lots of double crosses and no clear good guy or bad guy make this such an intriguing watch. I honestly cant think of many problems I have with this other than the fact it kind of slows down in the second act after what I believe is a perfect first act. The acting is great and you really feel like your stuck in this situation with our protagonist thanks to immersive production design and location. Highly recommended.
Completely hypnotic and stylish to an absurd degree, shows the grittier side of Chinese megacities (in this case Wuhan) with a type of hyper neon formalism that I haven't seen this boldly achieved since NWR's Only God Forgives.
MundoF 6,228 films
The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF, stylized as tiff) is one of the largest publicly attended film festivals in the…