Lu Yanshi is ripped away from his family and arrested as a political prisoner during China's Cultural Revolution, forced to work in a merciless labour camp. He makes a futile escape attempt in a plan with his daughter Wanyu, but he is soon re-captured and put back to work. Some years later, he is finally freed when the Revolution comes to an end, but he is less than welcomed when he returns home. His wife has suffered an accident which has left her with permanent amnesia and she is unable to recognise her husband upon his return. She shuns Yanshi, and continues to wait for her husband's return, and so he does what he can to jog her memory and convince her that it's him. When that fails, he must find another way to remain close to her - but that may mean abandoning their marriage.
Continue: Zhang Yimou's Coming Home Trailer
It's probably too late and too familiar a technique to do either, but there's plenty to admire despite those limitations, for which it has already received critical and award level acclaim. At the time of this writing, it is one of the 2002 Oscar nominees for Best Foreign Language Film.
Continue reading: Hero (2002) Review
The most expensive and highest grossing film in Chinese history, Zhang Yimou's "Hero" went on to snag one of 2002's Oscar nominations for Best Foreign Film. Unfortunately, the notorious Miramax snapped it up and sat on it for two years, as if somehow ashamed of their newest acquisition. Indeed, naysayers quickly dismissed the film as a Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon knockoff.
Earlier this year, Miramax very cautiously allowed "Hero" to open the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, and now they've suspiciously dumped it at the end of August, where unwanted films usually go to die.
Despite all this, when Hero finally exploded on the big screen it quickly and effortlessly established itself as one of the two or three most exceptional, spectacular and beautiful martial arts movies ever made.
Continue reading: HERO Review
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