Love is an universal subject but it does differ from West to Orient.Western love is more open while Oriental love is always quite restrained.There are some exceptions as Oriental love films like In the Realm of the Senses goes extremely crazy and Western love films like Remains of the Day and The Age of Innocence hold emotions in a restrained manner,but in most of the cases,the theory stands true.I have already talked about Turn Left,Turn Right and Chungking Express in previous My Top 10 All-Time Favorite Love Films list,so I’m gonna introduce another 10 fantastic Chinese love films to you guys today,hope you would enjoy it as well.
#10 Suzhou River dir. Ye Lou
The river Suzhou that flows through Shanghai is a reservoir of filth, chaos and poverty, but also a meeting place for memories and secrets. Lou Ye, who spent his youth on the banks of the Suzhou, shows the river as a Chinese Styx, in which forgotten stories and mysteries come together. Watching it would remind you of Hitchcock’s Vertigo and some Wong karwai films.
#9 Rouge dir. Stanley Kwan
This ghost fable won 5 Hong Kong Film Awards in 1989 including Best Picture,Best Director,Best Actress (Anita Mui),and remains to be the finest film of Legendary Singer-Actress Anita Mui.
#8 A Chinese Odyssey dir. Jeffery Lau
Fantasy adventure about the arrival of Buddhism in China. It is so popilar in China during 1990s that almost every Chinese young people knows the classic lines in it.It also marks the one of the finest film of Chinese great comedy actor Stephen Chow.
#7 A Chinese Ghost Story dir. Siu-tung Ching
One of the most successful commercial film in Chinese cinema history,the special effects in it was not less spectacular than Hollywood production in those days.However,it is the utterly sad story between ghost and human that captures the audiences’ hearts.
#6 Farewell My Concubine dir. Kaige Chen
#5 Lust,Caution dir. Ang Lee
This is a great example of adapting an very ordinary short novel into a first-class film,and it shows Ang lee’s artistry of portraying the subtle relationship between woman and man.It is one of the rare films that sexual scenes are so violent yet so important in Chinese cinema history.
#4 Comrades: Almost a Love Story dir. Peter Chan
One of the best films about love in destiny.The song which shares the same Chinese name as the film is the most famous song by Teresa Teng,one of the most popular female singer during 1980s and 1990s.
#3 In the Mood for Love dir. Wong Karwai
You can not resist Wong Karwai’s love films,can you? This gorgeously shot love affair film has its own Oriental quality in every aspect,those ever changing cheongsams on Maggie Chueng are the most impressive Chinese element ever presented to Western Audiences.
#2 The Love Eterne dir. Han Hsiang Li
You have to be surprised about this symmetrical resemblance between Oriental and Western culture,this film is the Oriental version of “Romeo and Juliet”.The only difference is it is not a famous play but a legendary story passed down generation by generation in China.
#1 Spring in a Small Town dir. Mu Fei
This is the ultimate definition of Oriental love film.Today it is considered one of the classics of Chinese film, with the Hong Kong Film Awards Association naming it the greatest Chinese film ever made in 2005.
So any discoveries here? Which one do you expect to see? What I have missed? Let me know in the comments.
Other lists in my Love Film List Marathon you might be interested