Books and Movies Reviews

Chinese film review

The most exciting event in contemporary Chinese cinema was the emergence of the Fifth Generation filmmakers in the early 1980s. These young filmmakers, who graduated from Beijing Film Academy when it reopened after the Cultural Revolution, were given the opportunity to make films at minor studios in the interiors of China. They immediately set themselves the task of "modernizing" Chinese cinema. Reinforced by a number of middle-aged filmmakers, they helped create what is now generally known as the "Chinese new Wave", a cinema noted for its artistic inventiveness, its reappropriation of the rich culture heritage of the nation and eagerness to deal with social issues (www.usc.edu/isd/archives/asianfilm/china/newcinema.html). It is not my purpose here to offer a comprehensive review of the Fifth generation and the role they have played in shaping the course of Chinese cinema. The following notes constitute an attempt to understand them and to identify historical perspectives as well as cultural perspective through a formal feature of the films e.g. thematic concerns, techniques, symbols, and the characters in the film. Among Chinese cinemas, there are The Family, Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, and Yellow earth that can be good examples. I shall therefore examine four movies which are The Family, Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, and Yellow earth respectively through all aspects as stated.
The Family is considered as a classic work which is well-illustrated about the conflict between the old generation and the young generation in the family. Moreover, this film is associated with the May Fourth Movement which can be understood to encompass the year between 1917 and 1921 (www.orpheus.ucsd.edu). The novel which it was based on was written by an active participant of the movement. For thefirst illustration, movie depicts patriarchal-structured family. The head of the family is an old man named master Kao, he holds tightly…

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