Yu Hong leaves her home village and starts university in Beijing, where she develops a consuming and compulsive relationship with another student. The student riots from 1989 then ensue and take a toll on their lives.
The river Suzhou that flows through Shanghai is a reservoir of filth, chaos and poverty, but also a meeting place for memories and secrets. Lou Ye, who spent his youth on the banks of the ... See full summary »
Hired to spy on a philandering husband, Luo Haitao soon becomes entangled in a clandestine affair with the other man. Along with Luo's girlfriend, they succumb to the delirium of drunken nights, but how long can their tryst last?
Lu Jie is having coffee with her desperate friend Sang Qi, who believes her husband is cheating on her. At the same time at a hotel across the road from the coffee shop, Lu Jie sees her ... See full summary »
In Paris, the Chinese university student Hua is dumped by her lover. Hua wanders on the streets and the French worker Mathieu accidentally hits her face with the pipes that he is carrying ... See full summary »
The Chief of Construction Committee leaps to his death from a tall building. Yang Jiadong, a rookie cop begins investigating it. Forced out of his job and to the safety of Hong Kong, he endeavors to discover the truth.
Ding Hui is a member of Purple Butterfly, a powerful resistance group in Japanese occupied Shanghai. An unexpected encounter reunites her with Itami, an ex-lover... and officer with a ... See full summary »
A town in Fengjie county is gradually being demolished and flooded to make way for the Three Gorges Dam. A man and woman visit the town to locate their estranged spouses, and become witness to the societal changes.
Two Chinese coal miners have hit upon the perfect scam: murder one of their fellow mine workers, make the death look like an accident, and extort money from the boss to keep the incident ... See full summary »
Studying in Hong Kong but living in Shenzhen (the port city of Mainland China), Peipei has spent 16 years in her life travelling between these two cities. To realize the dream of seeing ... See full summary »
Country girl Yu Hong leaves her village, her family and her lover to study in Beijing. At university, she discovers an intense world of sexual freedom and forbidden pleasure. Enraptured, compulsive, she falls madly in love with fellow student Zhou Wei. Driven by obsessive passions they can neither understand nor control, their relationship becomes one of dangerous games - betrayals, recriminations, provocations - as all around them, their fellow students begin to demonstrate, demanding democracy and freedom. Protests collapse, and Yu and Zhou lose each other amidst the social chaos and panicked crowds. Zhou Wei is sent to a summer military camp, and on his release moves to Berlin, fleeing both his country and memories of Yu. She finds a job, a lover, but can not forget Zhou. In Germany, social unrest is mounting: calls for freedom, demonstrations for democracy. A familiar story for Zhou. Weary, still haunted by Yu, he returns to China as the Berlin Wall crashes down. He finds her at ...Written by
In September of 2006, director Lou Ye was barred from making movies for five years because the film incorporated footage of the Tiananmen Square demonstrations and wasn't screened for Chinese officials. The Chinese government also demanded that all copies of the film be confiscated. See more »
The fashionable clothing worn by characters Yu Hong and Zhou Wei throughout their scenes as university students simply did not exist in China at this time nor for at least another decade. Mainland Chinese students circa the 1980s would have worn nondescript, non-branded attire rather than the high-heels, hipster track suits, designer dresses and sexy lingerie worn by the actors and actresses in Summer Palace. See more »
Having watched the movie myself and reading some of the comments/reviews with regards to the movie prompted me to post something in fairness to the movie.
I feel that the movie was meant to let audience have a feeling that the leads in the movies are lost. If we were to think of the backdrop of the movie, set in the late 80's, Tiananmen incident, the chant for democracy, all this would have let you understand that the China then was not a China that many could understand.
The China up till the 80s was probably such a controlled and suppressed place to live in, and when these suppressed feelings and emotions were suddenly set free, it was like an explosion. The literature and external factors began influencing the way the people viewed and did things. This could explain the "mindless" love making scenes as the desires to love and to have sex were probably something that was not openly displayed or demonstrated. Freedom is what everyone wants, but the maturity to handle the consequence of the actions brought about by freedom might not be something that everyone can handle.
The movie also explores on people who dare not love. All because they fear losing it. I personally felt the characterization was done quite well, and was aptly shown by the character Yu Hong. Love is not something that can be explained logically or defined in any one way. The insight to the characters views and actions in this movie shows that clearly.
Summer Palace is a movie worth watching, but it might not be a movie that is for everyone. Keep an open mind and try and understand the time and country this movie is set in, you'd probably appreciate the movie much better that way.
37 of 39 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this