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Analysis of Farewell My Concubine - Movie Review Example

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"Analysis of Farewell My Concubine Movie" paper focuses on the film that examines the development and relationship of two opera singers as they live and experience a large portion of 20th-century Chinese history. One of the central concerns of the film is the development and transformation of Dieyi…
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Analysis of Farewell My Concubine Movie
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Download file to see previous pages At the beginning of the film, Dieyi’s mother is forced to chop his finger off so that he can be accepted to the training academy. This narrative element is used as it demonstrates the urgency Dieyi’s mother has to get rid of the child; the superfluous finger also functions to characterize Dieyi as unique, as the viewer will later discover that he is destined to become a renowned opera singer.

One of the central thematic concerns of the first half of the film is identity construction. The scenes in the training center explore the nature of gender identity and demonstrate an elaborate process of the destruction and construction of Dieyi’s persona from masculinity to femininity. Throughout his transformation, the film interrelates images of discipline and destruction with the gradual deconstruction of Dieyi’s masculinity. Such outward manifestations of this deconstruction are seen in the frequent punishments the boy receives. His transformation is also symbolically evident after he is punished for running away; Dieyi begins to attack his face and cover it with blood, symbolically indicating the destruction of his past masculine identity. Eventually, the last remnants of his former self are restricted to the verbal utterances that refuse to utter the feminine lines. It’s only after his mouth is physically assaulted with the tobacco pipe and he bleeds that he transformation is complete. In this sense, his masculine identity is physically destroyed, with the blood spewing from his mouth the physical remains.

From the opening scenes of Zhang Yimou’s Raise the Red Lantern it’s clear that the film offers a critical interpretation of Chinese society that offers considerable insight to an uninformed Western viewer, as well as a powerful comment on the nature of human sexual relations. When watching the film one might also consider Mitter (2008) who uses a description of early 20th century Chinese values to describe the 21st-century landscape. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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