MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,194 this week

Raise the Red Lantern (1991)
"Da hong deng long gao gao gua" (original title)

8.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.2/10 from 17,431 users  
Reviews: 98 user | 46 critic

China in the 1920's. After her father's death, nineteen year old Songlian is forced to marry Chen Zuoqian, the lord of a powerful family. Fifty year old Chen has already three wives, each ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(novel),
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 30 Jun 2011
 
a list of 36 titles
created 01 Aug 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 03 Sep 2012
 
a list of 24 titles
created 10 months ago
 
a list of 24 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Raise the Red Lantern (1991)

Raise the Red Lantern (1991) on IMDb 8.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Raise the Red Lantern.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 22 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Ju Dou (1990)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A woman married to the brutal and infertile owner of a dye mill in rural China conceives a boy with her husband's nephew but is forced to raise her son as her husband's heir without ... See full summary »

Directors: Fengliang Yang, Yimou Zhang
Stars: Li Gong, Wei Li, Baotian Li
To Live (1994)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Fugui and Jiazhen endure tumultuous events in China as their personal fortunes move from wealthy landownership to peasantry. Addicted to gambling, Fugui loses everything. In the years that ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: You Ge, Li Gong, Ben Niu
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A pregnant peasant woman seeks redress from the Chinese bureaucracy after the village chief kicks her husband in the groin in this comedy of justice. As she is frustrated by each level of ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Li Gong, Peiqi Liu, Liuchun Yang
Red Sorghum (1987)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1930s China a young woman is sent by her father to marry the leprous owner of a winery. In the nearby red sorghum fields she falls for one of his servants. When the master dies she finds... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Li Gong, Wen Jiang, Rujun Ten
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A provincial boy related to a Shanghai crime family is recruited by his uncle into cosmopolitan Shanghai in the 1930s to be a servant to a ganglord's mistress.

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Li Gong, Baotian Li, Wang Xiaoxiao
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The story of two men, who met as apprentices in the Peking Opera, and stayed friends for over 50 years.

Director: Kaige Chen
Stars: Leslie Cheung, Fengyi Zhang, Li Gong
The Road Home (1999)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Prompted by the death of his father and the grief of his mother, a man recalls the story of how they met in flashback.

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Ziyi Zhang, Honglei Sun, Hao Zheng
Not One Less (1999)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In a remote mountain village, the teacher must leave for a month, and the mayor can find only a 13-year old girl, Wei Minzhi, to substitute. The teacher leaves one stick of chalk for each ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Minzhi Wei, Huike Zhang, Zhenda Tian
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A Japanese father travels to China's Yunnan province in the place of his ailing son to film a famous folk-opera star.

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Ken Takakura, Kiichi Nakai, Shinobu Terajima
Action | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

During China's Tang dynasty the emperor has taken the princess of a neighboring province as wife. She has borne him two sons and raised his eldest. Now his control over his dominion is complete, including the royal family itself.

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Yun-Fat Chow, Li Gong, Jay Chou
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Aircraft hijacking with Chinese special forces rescue. Gong Li as a heroic stewardess.

Directors: Fengliang Yang, Yimou Zhang
Stars: You Ge, Li Gong, Xiaoning Liu
Keep Cool (1997)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

China, the 1990s. A young bookseller is in love with a woman. The woman is now with another guy, a rich man. The rich man sends his people to beat the bookseller. In the fight, the laptop ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: You Ge, Wen Jiang, Gang Jiao
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Saifei He ...
Meishan (Third Wife)
Cuifen Cao ...
Zhuoyan (Second Wife)
Jingwu Ma ...
The Master
Qi Zhao ...
Housekeeper
Lin Kong ...
Yan'er
Shuyuan Jin ...
Yuru (First Wife)
Weimin Ding ...
Zhengyin Cao ...
Old servant
Zhihgang Cui ...
Dr. Gao
Chu Xiao ...
Feipu
Edit

Storyline

China in the 1920's. After her father's death, nineteen year old Songlian is forced to marry Chen Zuoqian, the lord of a powerful family. Fifty year old Chen has already three wives, each of them living in separate houses within the great castle. The competition between the wives is tough, as their master's attention carries power, status and privilege. Each night Chen must decide with which wife to spend the night and a red lantern is lit in front of the house of his choice. And each wife schemes and plots to make sure it's hers. However, things get out of hand... Written by Mattias Pettersson <seaman@sbbs.se>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

red lantern | death | china | lantern | 1920s | See more »

Taglines:

China, 1920. One master, four wives.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1991 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Raise the Red Lantern  »

Box Office

Gross:

$2,603,061 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

"The Master's" face is never seen. It is either obscured behind thin curtains or out of shot. See more »

Quotes

Songlian's mother: Rich man? If you marry a rich man, you will only be his concubine.
Songlian: Let me be a concubine. Isn't that the fate of a woman?
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Story of Film: An Odyssey: Episode #1.12 (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Engrossing from the first moments
3 March 2004 | by (Kansas City, Missouri, USA) – See all my reviews

My interest was maintained throughout every minute of this rather long film. I don't remember when I've seen another film in which every single role was played to perfection. (Incidentally, this wonderfully believable acting seems to occur in at least some, if not most, of the roles in every Chinese movie I see, from the mainland or otherwise.)

The story is one of classical simplicity, in in large part presented with the same classical, clear quality. The interplay of passion, jealousy, and revenge is reminiscent of Shakespeare, but, for me, more entertaining--if it's proper to speak of such ultimately somber and even horrifying subject matter as entertainment.

I unhesitatingly gave a vote of ten, and noticed that a full 33% of voters so far had done the same--very unusual.

When Roger Ebert called "Raise the Red Lantern" "breathtakingly beautiful," he wasn't exaggerating. But beyond its beauty, its moral seriousness, the fact that not for a moment is it "dumbed down" in the regrettable Hollywood fashion, its superb acting, and its almost unbelievably perfect pacing, make it a rare, rare experience.

"Red Sorghum," the only other Zhang Yimou film I've seen so far, I found somewhat propagandistic but gripping and visually stunning (even more so than "Raise the Red Lantern.") I will be making an effort to see more of this director's fairly extensive body of work.

It's a shame major theater chains don't schedule movies of this caliber instead of the torrent of commercialized Hollywood trash they foist on the public, which, alas, seems only too eager to wallow in more and more of it.


48 of 57 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why was it banned in China? digitalevk
Is she really crazy? jhandy-1
Gong Li paperbasket
DVD RELEASE!!!!! lachesistriforce
Gong Li as a real-life concubine chicagograd
Why Didn't Songlian...? virtual_dummy27
Discuss Raise the Red Lantern (1991) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?