Farewell My Concubine
Directed by Chen Kaige
This is one of those films that seems more like a homework assignment than a piece of entertainment. It is epic in its coverage of over fifty years of Chinese history and has breathtaking moments. In other words, it was incredibly dull.
God, where to begin with the plot summary of this. I am going to oversimplify this, partly because it is a lengthy movie and partly because I stopped paying attention about half way through. Basically, it is the story of two men, Douzi and Shitou, who met as apprentices of the Peking Opera. Douzi catches the feels for Shitou, but Shitou only has eyes for Juxian, a courtesan.
I know this film is a masterpiece, so I am trying to take the positive out of it. Gong Li is always fantastic and the opera scenes are gorgeous. The film is certainly an education; I might recommend it to people who aren't familiar with Chinese culture.
I think I have to stop there because to praise it anymore would be rather inauthentic, considering how bored I was. Probably a film everyone should see, but I am quite glad that it is behind me.
Jackie Chan was offered a role in this film but turned it down, as he feared the homosexual themes in the movie might tarnish his image.