During the Japanese occupation of China, two prisoners are dumped in a peasant's home in a small town. The owner is bullied into keeping the prisoners until the next New Year, at which time...
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Jiang Wen stars in his third directorial work that boasts a stellar cast including Joan Chen, Anthony Wong and Jaycee Chan. A polyptych of interconnected stories in different time-zones, ... See full summary »
Anthony Chau-Sang Wong
A young swordsman in 1930's China returns home to try and solve a five-year-old murder case. Described as the third installment of the gangster trilogy that includes "Let The Bullets Fly" and "Gone With The Bullets."
Set in 1920s Shanghai, Ma Zouri and Xiang Feitian establish a notorious beauty pageant called the Flowers Competition. All of the city's elite attend the gala event, but when Wanyan Ying ... See full summary »
Three thieves try to steal a valuable jade that is tightly guarded by a security chief. But the security guards are not the only obstacle these thieves are facing. An extremely unlucky ... See full summary »
When a leprous winery owner in 1930s China dies a few days after his arranged marriage, his young widow is forced to run the winery to make a living while contending with bandits, her drunkard lover, and the invading Japanese army.
During the Japanese occupation of China, two prisoners are dumped in a peasant's home in a small town. The owner is bullied into keeping the prisoners until the next New Year, at which time they will be collected. The village leaders convene to interrogate the prisoners. The townspeople then struggle to accommodate the prisoners. One is a bellicose Japanese nationalist, the other a nervous translator. Will the townspeople manage to keep the prisoners until the New Year?Written by
Ken Miller <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Do I feel late to the party on this one - how could I overlook this for the last 4 years? I was floored.
Watching "Devils on the Doorstep" reminded me of the first time I watched "seven samurai". Barring obvious comparisons such as being shot in black & white, using a combination of drama and comedy, and finishing it off with a startling ending, the movie's sense of time was fluid thanks to an excellent screenplay. Although the movie is lengthy, like many gems of Asian cinema, it was anything but a chore to watch it.
The plot is deceivingly simple, come alive thanks to Jiang's poetic directorial style. His characterization is succinct, but evocative, built up from his own personal memories. His vision of war has many ties to US cinema, with delirious, often hauntingly surreal, images of people trying to reconcile their own individual nature with that of being part of a collective.
I can see why Chinese censors would take offense to the film. China is painted as the victim that it is so often stereotyped as. However, with the country's continued objections against the Japanese glossing over wartime indiscretions, it could be seen as having nationalist overtones. I don't see the film as necessarily sympathetic to the Japanese: at the end of the movie, they are still the "devils". Additionally, when the plot is extrapolated outside of the film itself, the irony is of course that Japan was defeated by a powerful external force due to their brash political maneuvering.
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