China

Kaige Chen – Caught in the Web (2012)

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The story begins on a bus, when white-collar worker Ye refuses to give up her seat to a senior citizen. Her defiance is videotaped by a journalist intern and played during a news show. The video sparks intense debate on and off the Internet. Some Internet users search for Ye’s personal information and post it all online. The issue soon brings tremendous changes to the families of both the journalist intern and Ye’s boss. Read More »

Yen-ping Chu – Yi shi er niao AKA One Stone and Two Birds (2005)

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During the reign of Emperor Jia Jing of the Ming Dynasty, the evil court official Yan Song relies on the emperor favoritism towards him, becoming overbearing and domineering. An honest official Zhang Ying Long impeaches Yan Song w/ a “Ten Cimes Five Deceits” against him. But instead he gets flogged 30 times, and banished to a far off frontier Guizhou.

Zhang Ying Long’s remonstration won the hearts of the common people, on the day of his banishment thousands of people turned out to see him off. At the sight of this, Yan Sung knows that if he does not kill off Zhang Ying Long, he will be unable to deter other court officials. Thereupon, he arranges for assassins to kill Zhang Ying Long during the journey. Read More »

Fei Xie – Ben ming nian AKA Black Snow (1990)

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A semi-literate who was deprived of schooling during the Cultural Revolution, Li Huiquan, is released from labor camp. But his attempts to make good are continually thwarted. His street stall selling clothes puts him on the fringe of the black market, and he soon gets lured back into his old neighbourhood gangs. His disenchanted comrades include a nightclub chanteuse as well as an escaped convict. (IMDb) Read More »

Nelson Yu Lik-wai – Mingri tianya AKA All Tomorrow’s Parties (2003)

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Quote:
In a future century, after the apocalypse, Gui Dao dynasty controls continental Asia. Zhuai and his younger brother Mian are captured and sent to “Prosperity Camp” for reeducation. They soon discover that the camp’s aim is to brainwash people with propaganda. Five years later, there’s a change in government and they are free again. Zhuai falls in love for the beautiful Xuelan and together they take her to an old industrial city, now deserted. They get themselves a place to live in an abandoned apartment and try to rediscover the little pleasures of life Read More »

Shaohong Li – Hong fen AKA Blush (1994)

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The film charts the fortunes of two women who loved each other as sisters, but whose paths divulge when the Revolution brings an end to their old way of life in the brothel. IMDB
Two long-time female friends in love with same man form the basis for this Chinese romantic saga. The story begins after the 1949 Communist takeover in China. Prior to that, the two women Xiao and Qiuyi had been prostitutes. Qiuyi was a proud woman with high ideals. Xiao was born and raised in a bordello, the Red Happiness Inn. Whereas Qiuyi is strong and independent, Xiao is nervous and dependent upon others. After the takeover, the women left the brothel and were to be rehabilitated. Qiuyi escapes and begins living with the youthful, wealthy Lao Pu, a former customer. She gets pregnant but is too proud to let on. Instead she cloisters herself in a Buddhist nunnery and ignores Lao’s pleas to come home. The Buddhist discover her pregnancy and evict her. She then miscarries. Meanwhile, Xiao completes her rehab and works in a silk factory. There she meets Lao who has lost all his wealth and now works. They have and affair. She gets pregnant. On their wedding day, Qiuyi appears carrying the yellow umbrella of separation. After the wedding, Lao and Xiao begin having terrible fights. He misses Qiuyi. He chooses a radical solution to his problem.Allmovie Read More »

Wayne Wang – Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (2011)

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Synopsis / Plot
In the 19th century in China, two girls named Snow Flower and Lily are bonded together for eternity. They are paired as laotong (in English: old sames) by a matchmaker who is also responsible for arranging their marriages. They are isolated by their families and communicate by writing in a secret language, Nu shu (a historical practice in China in that period).

Meanwhile, in the present day Shanghai, their descendants Sophia and Nina struggle with the intimacy of their own childhood friendship. As teenagers, Sophia and Nina were introduced to the idea of laotong, and they signed a traditional laotong contract. Then, they must understand the story of the ancestral connection, hidden from them in the folds of the antique white silk fan, or lose one another. Read More »