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AnnJewel Lee Dixon
In 1880's China, young Lalu is sold into marriage by her impoverished father. Rather than becoming a bride, Lalu ends up in an Idaho gold-mining town, the property of a saloon owner who renames her China Polly and plans to sell her as entertainment for the locals. Refusing to become a whore, Lalu ultimately finds her own way in this strange country filled with white demons. Written by
A gorgeous and very intelligent movie. Highly unusual to make a western from the Chinese point of view, also to make one from the woman's point of view.
These people do it without sentimentality; there's never a false note in it. Lalu has three strikes against her: an ethnic Mongol in China, a woman in a male culture, a Chinese in America. Yet she can draw on her warrior traditions forb a sense of pride inaccessible to most of her compatriots.
The relationships she gets into seem totally real; at the same time, there is no attempt to cover up the ugly reality of white racism (not that the Chinese men are much better than the Americans).
This is how the old west must have been, and this movie gives us an honest and dramatic portrayal. It deserves to be much better known.
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