Curse Of The Golden Flower


Spectacle triumphs over storytelling in the lavish but lazy finale to Zhang Yimou’s Wuxia trilogy. Set amid the jade(d) opulence of Tang Dynasty China, its convoluted royal drama plays out like Hamlet crossed with a Chanel No 5 ad – despite Gong Li’s fire and ice performance. The extras mirror the movie’s problems, with galleries, featurettes and a 20-minute Making Of delivering less than their surface promise. In doc Secrets Within, the director offers historical insight, but keeps his own secrets close to his chest. Self-deprecating star Chow Yun-Fat is better, ’fessing up problems with the Mandarin dialogue and weighty costumes. Asian pop idol Jay Chou reveals his timidity around Gong: “I couldn’t look her in the eye.”


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