Farewell My Concubine (1993) Chinese Movie Information
Title in Chinese – 霸王别姬
Title in Pinyin – Ba Wang Bie Ji
Genre – Drama
Subject/theme – The lives of two Beijing Opera performers and a courtesan from the 1920's to the 1970's
Language – Mandarin
Region – China
Hong Kong – 1st January 1993
France – 20th May 1993
USA – October 1993
Australia – 3rd February 1994
Movie runtime – 171 minutes
Director – Chen Kaige
Cast & Role Played
Gong Li – Juxian,
Leslie Cheung – Douzi/Cheng Dieyi, Beijing Opera performer
Fengyi Zhang – Shitou/Duan Xiaolou, Beijing Opera performer
Qi Lu – Master Guan
Farewell My Concubine chronicles the lives of two Beijing opera performers and a courtesan that comes into their lives through China’s social and political upheaval during the Japanese invasion, the civil war, the great leap forward and the cultural revolution. Using the lives of the three main characters, this movie tells the story of China and Chinese people from the 1920’s all the way through to the 1970’s.
Douzi and Shitou trained to be opera performers from when they were boys and after many years of struggle, they finally became opera stars in Beijing. Shitou falls in love with a courtesan Juxian from the exclusive House of flowers who tricks him into marrying her. Douzi initially does not approve of Juxian but eventually accepts her and a complex but enduring relationship develops between the three of them.
The movie climaxes tragically on the eve of the cultural revolution and the last scene takes places in 1977 and is the last performance between Shitou and Douzi.
Farewell My Concubine Links