Archive for August 21st, 2009

city of sadness 2

by Allan Fish

(Taiwan 1989 158m) not on DVD

Aka. Beiqing Chengshi

Made in Taiwan

p  Qui Fusheng  d  Hou Hsiao-Hsien  w  Wu Nianzhen, Zhu Tianwen  ph  Chen Huai’en  ed  Liao Qingsong  m  Tachikawa Naoki, Zhang Hongyi  art  Liu Zhihua, Lin Chongwen

Jack Kao (Wen-Leung), Li Tianlu (Ah-Lu), Chen Songyong (Lin Wen-Heung), Tony Leung (Lin Wen-Ching), Wu Yifang (Hinoe), Ikuyo Nakamura (Shizuko), Xin Shufen (Hinomo), Gao Jie, Chen Shufang, Ke Suyun, Lin Liqing,

Hardly the only film made in Taiwan, but perhaps the only film to analyse that very birth, from the era just after the end of the Japanese wartime occupation to the expulsion there of Chiang Kai-Shek by the communists in the Chinese mainland.  It even begins quite deliberately with a woman giving birth, the labour pains of a country in a microcosm, and the microcosm through which this crucial period in the history of Taiwan is viewed are a simple family, a group of brothers whose fate is inextricably linked to the historical events around them, which are mentioned, but hover like vultures around a dying animal, Father Time circling around waiting to move in for the kill. (more…)

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