Andrew Garfield, Mahershala Ali, Ruth Negga, and five others received their first-ever acting nominations for 2017. While these actors are new to the Academy Awards, you may recognize them from their earlier work.
One of the beautiful huangmei musical films made by Shaw's in the 60's before Chang Cheh transformed Shaw Brothers with his macho heroic bloodshed films. This is not the best and is rated low by many critics for its static sets (I counted five) and lack of Li Han-Hsiang. But Ivy Ling Po (playing a man) and Fang Yin playing a Chinese fairy who wants to come to earth put real emotion into their roles and personally I loved the brocade making sequence where Fang's fairy sisters help her perform an impossible task (very reminiscent of some western fairy tales). The costumes are sumptuous, the songs lovely and Celestial have produced a good print. Pity the extra explaining the background was in Cantonese with no sub titles as these are clearly close to opera style. Apparently the male Opera players of the time thought film a lesser medium and left it to the women to act in them. This is really a theatrical production recorded on film. Anyone interested in Chinese culture and mythology would enjoy this. Note as is typical of Chinese films it has to western eyes a sad ending.
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