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Film Analysis (choose 1 form 7 questions) - Essay Example

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Zhang Yimou’s Hero: Issues and Ideology in Contemporary China Zhang Yimou’s Hero (2002) depicts particular trait, thought, and culture salient to Chinese people. A beautifully crafted movie, the Hero film shows certain subject matter that essentially reflects things and ideas marked in today’s China: e.g., nationalism…
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Film Analysis (choose 1 form 7 questions)
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Zhang Yimou’s Hero: Issues and Ideology in Contemporary China Zhang Yimou’s Hero (2002) depicts particular trait, thought, and culture salient to Chinese people. A beautifully crafted movie, the Hero film shows certain subject matter that essentially reflects things and ideas marked in today’s China: e.g., nationalism. With martial art movements and techniques that are remarkably stunning, Yimou’s movie evokes forces and stuffs that are prominent in the director’s native land: unity in the divided nation. By and large, the Hero movie has a touch of the Chinese tradition. Yimou’s Hero depicts certain sociopolitical issues notable in the contemporary China. In the film, the protagonist named Nameless desires to kill the emperor of China. The main reason why Nameless wants to assassinate the emperor is because his family was murdered by the imperial soldiers. In this narrative, the film reflects particular issues or problems marked in today’s China: the state as more powerful than the people. When the kins of Nameless were murdered, it had certain political “objective” motive. In parallel to contemporary China, the state exercises particular actions in order to ensure the stability of the nation. In implementing its program, the Chinese Government has to use force, at certain point in time, in order to obtain the state’s plans and goals. The individual citizen is merely viewed as inferior in comparison to the state’s superior role. In contrast to democracy -- at least to the Western perspective -- China stresses the importance of state power over people power. Moreover, the Hero film reflects, at certain degree, the national cinema in China. In Yimou’s movie, the narrative somehow depicts the minds or visions of particular Chinese directors and other people characterized in the Chinese movie-making: unity or nationalism. As it appears, Yimou poses as a nationalist filmmaker by choosing a movie narrative that reinforces the imperative for national unity. It is noteworthy that the over-all theme of the Hero movie is the need for people to support a unitary government. This is evidently a Chinese tradition, namely, the subordination to the superiors. The Confucian politics dictates the Chinese people to follow the goals and programs of their wise leader. And the national cinema in China, to my mind, carries the Confucian tradition. Further, Yimou’s movie is far from a criticism to the present-day government system in China. The ideology subtly carried in the Hero movie is a socialist one with a touch of Confucianism. In spite of the hatred held by Nameless against the emperor, he succumbs his personal rage to the greater goal of collective nation. Confucius taught his followers, past or present, to surrender to the leader who has the capacity to harmonize the social sphere. When the leader has the ability to unify the divided state, then such leader is a wise one. The ideology in the film has a socialist orientation for the reason that the movie depicts the need of force and violence in order to harmonize the multifaceted country. The emperor of China, as shown in the film, exhibits force and violation to ensure political and national peace and stability. As a whole, Yimou’s Hero is embedded markedly in the Chinese culture and tradition. Read More
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