The Sun Also Rises (VCD) (Hong Kong Version) VCD
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YesAsia Editorial Description
Making use of an elliptical narrative with four overlapping threads, The Sun Also Rises opens in 1976 with the topsy-turvy lives of a harried young man (Jaycee Chan) and his seemingly crazed mother (Zhou Yun) in a quiet village in eastern China. The brigade leader of his village, the son is constantly tending to his mother's strange habits and disappearing routine, which hint of a story-laden past. In another part of China, university professor Liang (Anthony Wong) attracts the attentions of a seductive nurse (Joan Chen) and then a persistent mob when he gets accused of sexual harassment. He can only turn to friend Tang (Jiang Wen) for help. Seemingly unrelated lives begin to intersect in the past and present when Tang is sent to the young brigade leader's village for reform labor.
Like his previous two features, The Sun Also Rises is set in a politically sensitive period, primarily the waning days of the Cultural Revolution. Adapted from the novel Velvet by Ye Mi, the film is both puzzling and enchanting with an offbeat, often humorous tone and subtle, unconventional story that defies convenient cinematic labels. Boasting beautiful photography, superb production values, and a stirring score from Hisaishi Joe, The Sun Also Rises brims with life and sound, creating a cinematic experience as rousing as the bugle Jiang totes around in the film. Other than Jiang Wen himself, the film stars Anthony Wong, Joan Chen, Jaycee Chan (Invisible Target), and Jiang's wife Zhou Yun (Warriors of Heaven and Earth), all of whom give remarkable performances. Rock legend Cui Jian and Jiang's newborn son also make special appearances in the film.
|Product Title:||The Sun Also Rises (VCD) (Hong Kong Version) 太陽照常升起 (VCD) (香港版) 太阳照常升起 (VCD) (香港版) 太陽照常升起 (VCD) (香港版) The Sun Also Rises (VCD) (Hong Kong Version)|
|Artist Name(s):||Anthony Wong (Actor) | Jiang Wen (Actor) | Joan Chen (Actor) | Jaycee Chan (Actor) | Cui Jian (Actor) | Zhou Yun (Actor) 黃 秋生 (Actor) | 姜文 (Actor) | 陳沖 (Actor) | 房祖名 (Actor) | 崔健 (Actor) | 周韻 (Actor) 黄 秋生 (Actor) | 姜文 (Actor) | 陈冲 (Actor) | 房祖名 (Actor) | 崔健 (Actor) | 周韵 (Actor) 黄秋生 （アンソニー・ウォン） (Actor) | 姜文（チアン・ウェン） (Actor) | 陳沖（ジョアン・チェン） (Actor) | 房祖名 （ジェイシー・チェン） (Actor) | 崔健（ツイ・ジェン） (Actor) | Zhou Yun (Actor) Anthony Wong (Actor) | Jiang Wen (Actor) | Joan Chen (Actor) | Jaycee Chan (Actor) | Cui Jian (Actor) | Zhou Yun (Actor)|
|Director:||Jiang Wen 姜文 姜文 姜文（チアン・ウェン） Jiang Wen|
|Country of Origin:||Hong Kong|
|Publisher:||Joy Sales (HK)|
|Package Weight:||110 (g)|
|Shipment Unit:||1 What is it?|
|YesAsia Catalog No.:||1005148680|
Director: Jiang Wen
[MADNESS] In a mist-cloaked, pebble-paved village that stands on rolling terraces, a young widow (Zhou Yun) and her son (Javcee Chan) live a magical and moonstruck existence. The widow has gone mad after losing her coveted embroidered shoes. Years pass, and her son becomes a junior brigade leader. One day, she takes him to an island where she has built a 'white palace', a stone igloo cluttered with memorabilia of his father - a recreation of her lost world. The son leaves home to pick up a couple sent down from the city. When he returns his mother has disappeared. Only her clothes and the embroidered shoes are adrift in the river.
[AMOUR] A college campus in the 1950s. Illicit passions smolder beneath the campus' apparently placid surface. Teacher Liang (Anthony Wong) and Old Tang (Jiang Wen) are buddies, Indonesian émigrés returning to build a New China. The voluptuous Doctor Lin (Joan Chen) is Tang's mistress, but she secretly hankers after Liang, who attracts women like honey to flies. One night, an outdoor screening is disrupted by startled cries of 'molester'; Liang is seen running for cover, but he has a fall and is hospitalized. Tang Lin and a secret admirer try to clear his name. To identity the culprit, Lin offers her backside behind a curtain....
[RIFLE] Old Tang is sent down to the village. While he's out hunting, his wife has become the junior brigade leader's prey. Crouching outside the stone igloo, Tang hears her murmur of pleasure: "my husband tells me my belly is like velvet". Facing the cuckold at gunpoint, the young Lothario is more bemused than fearful for his life. "What is velvet?" he asks naively. Tang postpones his day of reckoning and goes to Beijing to bring back a piece of velvet. he returns empty-handed, purged of his murderous intent, until the young man shows him a tattered flag: "her belly is nothing like velvet." The sound of a gunshot pierces the air.
[DREAM] An elegiac Uyghur song reverberates across the Gobi Desert. The sky is dyed a bright red. Two figures on camels come into focus. Both are women, one on her way to meet her fiancée, the other, heavy with child, is headed for a morgue where belongings of her missing husband lie. They part company at a crossroad. The Uyghurs hold a marriage celebration for Old Tang and his bride. Teacher Liang joins the fervent dancing, pinching a few girls' bottoms, and drawing squeals of laughter. A tent is set ablaze, and sent soaring into the sky by a gust of wind, bulging and billowing like a giant bottom. The flames illuminate the railway tracks, where the widow has just given birth to a son among a bed of flower. Thus begins the life of the junior brigade leader.
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features
Professional Review of "The Sun Also Rises (VCD) (Hong Kong Version)"
This professional review refers to The Sun Also Rises (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
The Sun Also Rises is a wondrous and beautiful film that exceeds expectations while also curiously sidestepping them. Actor-director Jiang Wen (Devils on the Doorstep) adapts from the novel "Velvet" by Ye Mi, delivering a film that doesn't exactly fit standard genre classification. The film tells four interrelated China-set stories, three of them taking place right around the end of the Cultural Revolution, though not explicitly stated as such. There's no hand-wringing or overwrought histrionics going on like in, say, Farewell My Concubine. Instead, the film concentrates on eccentric characters and unusual and quirky situations, sometimes tiptoeing on the edge of fantasy, but remaining grounded in a recognizable emotional and even political reality. The film also looks and sounds wonderful, though not so much that it entirely distracts the audience from its borderline unfathomable messages. Simply put, The Sun Also Rises enchants and entertains, but never quite adds up to something that concrete. However, that may be its ultimate strength.
The film opens in 1976 in a rural village in Eastern China, where a graying widow (Zhou Yun) dreams of a pair of embroidered shoes, and manages to purchase the exact pair the next morning from a local seller. However, she promptly loses them and subsequently seems to go mad. She spends her days uprooting a local tree, collecting large rocks, and generally acting like a village idiot with severe attitude. This is a problem for her son (Jaycee Chan), who has to constantly leave his job to prevent her from causing even more trouble, including possibly hurting herself. The conflict yields little overt resolution and lots of repetition, but somewhere in there, the mother makes her character and issues known, and her son subtly and quietly ages. Jaycee Chan is solid as the young man, and Zhou Yun is commanding and charismatic, demonstrating her character's madness with an odd combination of opaque charm and regal grace. The discoveries in this segment are major and yet not explicitly discussed, and the tone is lively, refreshingly comic, and ultimately bittersweet.
Segment two moves to Southern China in the same year, where college teacher Liang (Anthony Wong) comes under suspicion of perversion. Supposedly he groped some women at an outdoor movie, leading to an inspired flashlight-lit footchase and the sight of Anthony Wong injured, bedridden, and bizarrely beset by numerous women desiring his affections. Joan Chen is Dr.Lin, who desires to jump Liang's bones, and her wanton performance is dripping with palpable, possibly disturbing sexuality. Meanwhile, Liang turns to pal Tang (Jiang Wen) for some counsel, while silently coping with the possibility that the accusation against him may have set in motion events that will ruin him. This second segment features the most overt reference to the Cultural Revolution, referencing the time's "mob rule" mentality in a brazenly comic, but no less effective fashion. The segment is alive with song and character, delivering memorable moments and audio images that last long past the segment's surprising, affecting, and appropriate close.
Segment three moves back to Eastern China, where Tang meets up with the widow's son. The young man is now a brigade leader in the village, where Tang has been sent along with his wife (Kong Wei). The newcomers fit into their new environs in differing fashion. Tang becomes fast friends with the local kids thanks to the frequent pheasant hunts that he organizes, with his bugle providing the hunting calls, and his monstrous shotgun providing the means of execution. However, without his attentions, his wife begins to stray. Meanwhile, Tang discovers a mysterious stone cottage filled with crumbling monuments to memory, and the young man demonstrates an innocent, almost cheerful death wish. This third segment is given to the film's most evocative environments, and Jiang Wen anchors the entire segment with commanding presence. The film's plot - or what remains of it - finds its greatest suspense here, but that suspense is mitigated by a deliberate, inevitable outcome that bewilders as much as it affects.
The final story is the big payoff. Maybe. The film backtracks in time to 1958, where we finally learn how all these characters and events connect - or perhaps not. The Sun Also Rises doesn't deliver a discernible cause-and-effect that links its stories together, as the characters don't connect in the past as much as they just happen by one another via chance or coincidence. This is where the film's expectations fail, as the film's conclusion doesn't overtly reveal more than just the seeds of each character's eventual fate. The result is a movie that's a bit of a head scratcher, as it cannot deliver a conclusive point. For those seeking full understanding, The Sun Also Rises may be tough going, as it's clearly a film that's about something, but not one that presents its conclusions on clear, perfectly-lettered cue cards. When the film finally reaches its Gobi desert-set denouement, there's still the sense that the filmmakers need to dispense something - anything - that pulls the whole thing together. Willing cinema readers, cultural theorists, history buffs, or some combination of the above will likely find whole acres to chew on, but Joe Q. Moviegoer? They could be completely lost.
That's not to say that The Sun Also Rises fails, because it doesn't. Indeed, Jiang Wen takes his elliptical narrative and weaves something involving and even mesmerizing. Technically, the film is gorgeous, possessing sublime cinematography and art direction; Cultural Revolution-era China has probably never been more attractive than here. The film's sometimes fantastic feel extends beyond its events; the settings, colors, and atmosphere bleed a sort of idealized, glorious reality. The film's subtle tone is another key, sometimes implying the dramatic or tragic, but also seeming whimsical or lyrical. The acting and narrative, while potentially frustrating in their opacity, are nevertheless affecting in their unpredictable, immediate emotions. The music and sound are also top-notch; the film makes frequent use of song and poetry, ace composer Joe Hisaishi provides a trademark distinctive score, and the film's sound design has a powerful presence all its own. The lively tone and enchanting details easily carry the film. This is a movie that can end with meaning or purpose possibly escaping one's grasp. However, Jiang Wen makes acute, admirable use of every other power that cinema possesses, such that a complete story need not be told. It only has to happen, like a flower blooming, or perhaps the sun rising in the East. As a clear narrative journey, The Sun Also Rises doesn't quite click, but as cinema, the film absolutely soars.
by Kozo - LoveHKFilm.com
Customer Review of "The Sun Also Rises (VCD) (Hong Kong Version)"
See all my reviews
January 9, 2008
This customer review refers to The Sun Also Rises (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
A film of great lyrical beauty
Jiang Wen's "The Sun Also Rises" is a stunningly beautiful visual poem. Like most great poetry, it loses its brilliance when you try to explain it in a clinical manner. Its beauty lies in its resonances, in the echoes of its imagery.
The film's cinematography is gorgeous; Hisaishi Joe's film score is splendid. The performances by this terrific cast are masterful. Particularly memorable are Zhou Yun as an otherwordly mother and Joan Chen as the world's sexiest doctor.
This is a film that I am eager to watch over and over again. The very elliptical manner of its storytelling is sure to reward repeated viewings. I recommend "The Sun Also Rises" very, very highly to all.