Browsing Tag

Lou Ye

by Matt McCracken Film Retrospective

The Shadow Play | Lou Ye

May 17, 2019

Chinese filmmaker Lou Ye’s The Shadow Play is a vicious work that descends into the depths of corruption in both a private enterprise (the events of the film are based on those of the real company named here) and in State government (the implications of which are censored substantially, though not completely — thanks to some news broadcasting voiceover and images in the closing credits) over a span of decades. The film follows the ‘reform and opening up’ of China,…

Continue Reading

by Matt McCracken Film Retrospective

Blind Massage | Lou Ye

Lou Ye’s 2014 film Blind Massage marked a transition for director, one that took him into broadly more commercial territory for the first time. Based on the popular novel of the same name, the film unsurprisingly concerns the lives of a Nanjing-based community of…

May 17, 2019
by Luke Gorham Film Retrospective

Mystery | Lou Ye

Despite Lou Ye’s reputation for pushing the boundaries of Chinese censorship guidelines – due to his often frank and incisive takes on politics, gender, and sexuality – Mystery proves a confoundingly tame affair. It opens with the antics of privileged, hedonistic youths racing cars…

May 17, 2019
by Christopher Bourne Film Retrospective

Love and Bruises | Lou Ye

Love and Bruises, which Lou Ye made during his five-year, government-imposed ban from filmmaking in China, is a tale of l’amour fou set, appropriately enough, in Paris. However, the grand romanticism that usually marks such stories is replaced here by a grimly repetitive pattern…

May 17, 2019
by Iris Xie Film Retrospective

Spring Fever | Lou Ye

A film built upon gay male hypersexualization overlaid with some hamfisted prose, Spring Fever turns the sadness of being gay and Chinese into a dry drama that does not say anything new about the LGBTQ experience. The film opens with a jangly driving sequence…

May 17, 2019
by Daniel Gorman Film Retrospective

Summer Palace | Lou Ye

Lou Ye’s Summer Palace is an exasperating experience, full of interesting ideas and an incendiary political backdrop but falling victim to clichés of poeticized romantic longing. Though not a new idea, conflating the political and the personal can be an interesting way to explore how…

May 14, 2019
by Sean Gilman Film Retrospective

Suzhou River | Lou Ye

The year 2000 was a watershed year for Chinese-language cinema. Milestones like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and In the Mood for Love and Yi Yi saw release alongside lesser-known, but equally important, films like Jia Zhangke’s Platform and Jiang Wen’s Devils on the Doorstep (in…

May 14, 2019
by Lawrence Garcia Film Retrospective

Weekend Lover | Lou Ye

The most striking aspect of Weekend Lover, the directorial debut of Sixth Generation Chinese filmmaker Lou Ye, is its palpable sense of existence as a kind of ceaseless struggle. Indeed, the film itself feels practically willed into existence, exhibiting a preponderance of brash style…

May 14, 2019
by Paul Attard Film Retrospective

Don’t Be Young | Lou Ye

The literal translation of Don’t Be Young‘s Chinese title, “Wei Qing Shao Nu,“ means “Emotional Young Lady”— and it is, in many ways, a more than appropriate title for Lou Ye’s debut*. But the film’s stateside-given name serves a more theoretical purpose connected to its…

May 14, 2019
In Review | Online film and music criticism