After her outstandingly multifaceted performance as the beautiful, stealthy young girl-warrior in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," Zhang Ziyi took a role at the opposite end of the girl power spectrum in "The Road Home."

She stars as an idyllic rural teenager in 1950s China who falls in love with her remote village's new schoolteacher, a young man barely her senior with a broad, earnest smile that just lights her up inside.

You can tell he lights her up because Zhang's delicate, eager, ingenuous, resilient performance makes the audience feel so close to her it's like we're the butterflies in her stomach. There are so many levels of emotion, truth, and devotion in Zhang's eyes throughout this movie that she single-handedly makes it unabashedly and deeply romantic -- even though there's not a single kiss, not even an embrace, in the entire picture. In fact, the film's lovers spend less than 3 minutes of screen time face-to-face.

Continue reading: The Road Home Review