From Jackie Chan to Ang Lee, from "Supercop" to "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," Chinese cinema has truly arrived in the U.S. Filled with photos and tidbits, this is the definitive book for anyone who has already fallen in love with Chinese cinema--and all those who are looking to learn more about it.From Jackie Chan to Ang Lee, from "Supercop" to "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," Chinese cinema has truly arrived in the U.S. Filled with photos and tidbits, this is the definitive book for anyone who has already fallen in love with Chinese cinema--and all those who are looking to learn more about it.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 2003-11-03 Yang, the founder of the Asian-American periodical aMagazine, fell in love with the "guilty pleasure" of Chinese movies as a child, when his uncle took him to see "epic tales of blood, thunder, and magic." His account, enlivened by his innocent enthusiasm and his eye for pertinent detail, begins with a 1905 one-reeler, Dangjun Mountain. With a keen historical perspective, Yang introduces such early film icons as Ruan Lingyu, a "mistress of melodrama" who starred in the eerily prophetic Suicide Contract and then killed herself. He describes the evolution from women's pictures to martial arts movies, from the late 1910s to today. Action star Chang Cheh said in the 1960s that he wanted to put the spotlight on "real men who'd tear off their own legs and gleefully use them to beat their enemies to death," and this macho stance is reflected in Enter the Dragon and others in the Bruce Lee series. Yang crisply chronicles Lee's career from his minor Hollywood success, loss of the lead in TV's Kung Fu and eventual Hong Kong stardom. The contrast between the "vengeful, stone-faced" Lee, who died of cerebral edema at 32, and the mischievous, clownish Jackie Chan provides enjoyable reading. Yang also extensively covers John Woo's "bullet-riddled mayhem," the popularity of Hong Kong sex films featuring Chinese mythology, and a battle against piracy that made Chan take to the streets in protest. Capsule reviews offer an all-inclusive portrait of releases over half a century, and Yang clinches his case by reminding readers "they've had only the merest taste of the banquet that is yet to come. Save room for dessert." Photos. Agent, Ling Lucas. (Dec.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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