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Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
- Chow Yun Fat

Overview - Known for making films about familial relationships, director Ang Lee surprised everyone with his martial arts epic CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. Based on a novel by Wang Du Lu, CROUCHING TIGER starts with the revenge plot common in the wuxia stories that Lee loved as a child, then adds a feminist twist.  Read more...

 
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More About Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon - Chow Yun Fat
 
 
 
Overview

Known for making films about familial relationships, director Ang Lee surprised everyone with his martial arts epic CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. Based on a novel by Wang Du Lu, CROUCHING TIGER starts with the revenge plot common in the wuxia stories that Lee loved as a child, then adds a feminist twist. Li Mu Bai (Chow Yun Fat) is a legendary martial artist who has decided to pass on his sword, the Green Destiny, to a friend. Soon afterward, the sword is stolen by a masked female, setting in motion events that test the bonds of family, love, duty, and sisterhood. Chow appears with three generations of female stars: Cheng Pei Pei, a 1960s action heroine; Michelle Yeoh, the beauty queen turned 1980s action goddess; and newcomer Zhang Ziyi, who smolders as the princess who wants more than domestic tranquillity. Famed action choreographer Yuen Woo-Ping (THE MATRIX) stages jaw-dropping zero-G fights across rooftops, rivers, and bamboo trees, while Yo-Yo Ma punctuates the fisticuffs with dramatic cello solos. Described by Lee as "SENSE AND SENSIBILITY with martial arts," CROUCHING TIGER recalls the best wuxia films of the 1960s and pushes the genre in new directions.

Awards:
2000 - Academy Awards - Best Foreign Language Film Winner
2000 - Academy Awards - Best Cinematography Winner
2000 - Academy Awards - Best Original Score Winner

Cast List

Li Kong Hsu - Producer, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Ang Lee - Oscar winning Asian director, BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
Lee Ang - Oscar winning Asian director, BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
Pei Pei Cheng - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Li Li
Hui Ling Wang - screenwriter, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Yun-Fat Chow - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Chow Yun Fat - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Yun Fat Chow - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Chow Yun Fat - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Amon Chow - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Chow Yuen Fat - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Chow Yun-Fat - Hong Kong actor, THE KILLER/HARD BOILED
Chang Chen - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Chen Chang - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Xian Gao - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Kuo Jung Tsai - Screenwriter, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Bill Kong - producer, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Tim Yip - production design and costumes, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAG
Ziyi Zhang - Chinese actor, CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON, MEMOIRS OF A G
Zhang Ziyi - Chinese actor, CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON, MEMOIRS OF A G
Fa Zeng Li - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Deming Wang - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
James Schamus
Wang Du Lu - source writer, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Tim Squyres - Editor, THE HULK (2003)
Peter Pau - Hong Kong Director of Photography, CROUCHING TIGER (2000)
Tan Dun - Hong Kong Film Composer, CROUCHING TIGER (2000)
Yuen Woo-ping - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Wo Ping Yuen - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Yuen Wo Ping - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Woo-Ping Yuen - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Master Yuen Wo Ping - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Heping Yuan - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Wo Ping Yuan - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Woo Ping Yuen - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Woo Yuen - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Wu Ping Yuen - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Wo Ping - HK Director/Fight Choreographer (MATRIX, CROUCHING TIGER)
Sihung Lung - Actor/"Wedding Banquet"
Yan Hai - Hong Kong actor, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Michelle Khan - Hong Kong actress
Michelle Yeoh - Hong Kong actress
David Linde - executive producer, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Yo-Yo Ma - World-renowned cellist

 
Details
    DVD Format
  • Format: DVD
  • Run Time: 120
  • Color Format: Color
  • UPC: 043396059900
  • Genre: Foreign Video - Chinese
  • Rating: PG-13 (MPAA) (Martial arts violence and some sexuality.)
  • Release Date: May 2004

Related Categories:
Movies > Foreign Films
Movies > Chinese/Mandarin

Related Keywords:
Action
Martial Arts
Romance
Love Story
Epic
Theatrical Release
Mountains
China

 
Movie Reviews

More Details

Notes:
Theatrical release: December 8, 2000. Filmed on location in the Gobi Desert, Taklamakan Plateau, Urumchi, the Bamboo Forest in Anji, and Cheng De, with the permission of the Chinese government. Estimated budget: $15 million. CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON grossed more in its opening weekend in North America than any previous foreign film--more than $660,000, in a limited release, and in February 2001 became the highest-grossing foreign film in U.S. history as it soared past the $80 million mark. As of mid-April its total was nearly $120 million. Out of the 100 days of shooting, 80 were devoted to the fight scenes. The action sequences comprise 30 minutes of the 119-minute film. On his reason for making this film, Lee told the New York Daily News, "I'd always known I wanted to do martial arts. It was a boyhood fantasy. But the book [on which the film is based] had other ingredients I felt were very unusual for Chinese drama. It had strong female characters. It's an emotional tour. And it also had abundant insight into the old, classic Chinese society, which was very important to me." The actors speak Mandarin Chinese to keep the film as authentic as possible. Only one of the principal cast members--Zhang Ziyi--knew the mainland Mandarin dialect in which the script is written; not even Lee is fluent in the dialect, which is associated with a golden age of wuxia films. In an interview for the Asian edition of Time magazine, Yeoh said, "I don't think I studied this hard even for exams. Every single word needs the right intonation. I'd deliver a sixteen-line speech, get one word slightly wrong, and Ang would say, 'Let's do it all again.' I'd say, 'Can't we just do the one word again?' 'No, let's do it all.' So many times I thought, 'I'm so stupid, I'm so stupid, why are you using me?' But it builds character." Among the most important jobs on the film was the wire removal specialist, who was responsible for eliminating all the wires from the film negative to make it appear that the actors were actually floating and flying through the fight scenes. Lee originally wanted Shu Qi to play Jen. Lee had to ask Zhang Ziyi's acting school for permission to use her. Lee also originally wanted Jet Li to play Li Mu Bai. After Chow took on the role, the part's action sequences were downplayed and Li's romance with Yu was emphasized. Chow had never appeared in a swordplay movie before. When Chow flew into Beijing for filming, customs was shut down for 45 minutes because the officials wanted his autograph. The five-part novel on which the film was based was written before World War II. Because mainland books had been banned in Taiwan, Lee did not read the novel until 1994. After he read the series, he knew he wanted to adapt the books into a film but had to wait until he made three more films before he got the green light. Most of the film is based on book four of the series, which is also called CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. Jen's character is roughly the same, while Li was from book two of the series. Lee invented the character of Yu Shu Lien. Screenwriter James Schamus, who does not know Chinese, did not read the novel by Wang; instead, Lee provided him with a summary of the events he wanted to portray. Schamus wrote the script in English, which was then translated into Chinese. The script was translated into English and Chinese several more times as revisions were made. Schamus's coscreenwriters, Tsai Kuo-jung and Wang Hui-ling, helped make the dialogue more culturally relevant. Lines such as "I love you" were transformed into the much more culturally specific "I would rather be a ghost, drifting by your side." In an interview that appears with the screenplay for the film, Schamus said, "The Chinese embedded in every word of this movie has layers and layers of culture and meanings. They simply don't exist to a Western ear. It is one of the truly delicious ironies of this movie that although I cowrote it, I'll never fully understand all of its meanings."

Reviews:
"...The picture is more fun than it has a right to be....Mr. Lee puts things together artfully and stages this movie like a comedy of manners; it could be SENSE AND SENSIBILITY with a body count....It's an epic that breaks the laws of gravity." - 12/08/2000 New York Times, p.E16


"...This Cannes/New York Film Festival favorite has it all, starting with three towering central characters....[Ang Lee's film] offers melodically choreographed action scenes by THE MATRIX's Yuen Wo-Ping, Oscar-caliber photography by Peter Pau and the pleasure of seeing [Chow Yun Fat] in his most appealing performance yet..." -- 4 out of 4 stars - 12/08/2000 USA Today, p.1E


"...A triumph....CROUCHING TIGER envelops you in its exotic universe..." - 12/01/2000 Movieline's Hollywood Life, pp.36-38


"....Always entertaining and exhilarating....CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON is most notable for going beyond genre norms..." - 01/01/2001 Sight and Sound, p.45-6


"...CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON defies pigeon-holing by succeeding as a love story, an action movie and a fantasy....The best acted, best shot and most exciting film of the year..." -- 5 out of 5 stars - 02/01/2001 Total Film, p.78


"...A delightful one-of-a-kind martial arts romance where astounding fight sequences alternate with passionate yet idealistic love duets..." - 12/15/2000 Los Angeles Times, p.C1


"...Exhilarating....Ang Lee stages magnificent action sequences..." - 02/04/2001 Chicago Sun-Times, p.5

 
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