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Curse of the Golden Flower (2006)

Man cheng jin dai huang jin jia (original title)
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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.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 29 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Dahong Ni ...
...
Man Li ...
Jin Chen ...
Aaron C. Shang ...
Prince Liang (as Aaron Shang)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lisen Ai ...
Xiaoyi Chen ...
Xinhua Chen ...
Shusheng Cong ...
Bai Feng ...
Dingkong Feng ...
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Storyline

China, Later Tang Dynasty, 10th Century. On the eve of the Chong Yang Festival, golden flowers fill the Imperial Palace. The Emperor (Chow Yun Fat) returns unexpectedly with his second son, Prince Jai (Jay Chou). His pretext is to celebrate the holiday with his family, but given the chilled relations between the Emperor and the ailing Empress (Gong Li), this seems disingenuous. For many years, the Empress and Crown Prince Wan (Liu Ye), her stepson, have had an illicit liaison. Feeling trapped, Prince Wan dreams of escaping the palace with his secret love Chan (Li Man), the Imperial Doctor's daughter. Meanwhile, Prince Jai, the faithful son, grows worried over the Empress's health and her obsession with golden chrysanthemums. Could she be headed down an ominous path? The Emperor harbors equally clandestine plans; the Imperial Doctor (Ni Dahong) is the only one privy to his machinations. When the Emperor senses a looming threat, he relocates the doctor's family from the Palace to a ... Written by Sony Pictures Classics

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One King. One Queen. His Power. Her Rebellion. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

12 January 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La maldición de la flor dorada  »

Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$711,336 (USA) (22 December 2006)

Gross:

$6,565,495 (USA) (23 March 2007)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The plot is based on Yu Cao's 1934 play Thunderstorm, but is set in the Imperial court in ancient China. See more »

Goofs

When the Empress is dressing for the Chrysanthemum festival. Bobby pins and hair pins are visible in her hair. They were not produced until 1916. Chinese are noted with other decorative adornments to hold their hair in place such as combs and other trinkets seen in the movie. See more »

Quotes

Empress Phoenix: So you are leaving. Are you afraid?
Crown Prince Wan: You are my mother, Your Majesty.
Empress Phoenix: We have been intimate for three years. You, of all people should know who I am.
Crown Prince Wan: I am first and foremost my father's son.
Empress Phoenix: [grabs Wan, attempting to seduce him]
Crown Prince Wan: [recoils from the Empress] Mother!
Empress Phoenix: I am not your mother!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Juhua Tai
("Chrysanthemum Terrace")
Composed & Performed by Jay Chou
Lyrics by Vincent Fang
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A Golden Victory for an Extraordinary Film
20 January 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

So many superlatives can be applied to CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER that it's difficult to assess the movie without sounding totally biased and over the top. Few films have achieved the level of sheer visual beauty as this one with its interior shots of Chinese palace walls and columns illuminated by glowing hues of gold, emerald, and ruby. Few also have managed to weave the threads of so many tangled tortured relationships into such a spellbinding masterpiece of tragedy.

The seductive visual beauty of this film's set and costumes makes a powerful contrast to the deadly schemes and betrayals that motivate the leading characters, members of the Tang Dynasty (618-907 BC). Just as the viewer finds him- or herself starting to feel sorry for one character--for example the Empress who is being tortured by her husband, or the Emperor who has been scandalously betrayed by his wife--it turns out that nobody is 100 percent innocent, not even the youngest of the royal family's three sons. If there's one great exception to the royal family's collective guilt, it would be the second son, Prince Jai, played with nobility and charisma by Chinese pop star Jay Chou. Having proved himself on the battlefield as a worthy contender for the throne, Prince Jai returns home only to find himself agonizingly torn between loyalty to his mother and father. The sacrifice he makes in the end turns out to be the most brutal tragedy of all.

Yun Fat Chow as the Emperor and Gong Li in the role of the Empress give incredible performances as a couple whose love has long died but who remain together for the sake of political convenience. Behind their beautiful clothes, lavish furnishings, and perfectly choreographed movements, the two calmly seek each others' destruction. Yun Fat Chow's and Li's performance are on par with that of the world's best Shakespearean actors and the story of CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER itself can be compared to a combination of "King Lear" and "Oedipus Rex." One begins to truly appreciate the challenges directors face when considering the titanic logistics director Zhang Yimou had to deal with in order to make this film. Imagine the precision of detail and control it took to go, as he does with the movie, from one scene of dozens of beautiful feudal-era women waking and preparing to work in the palace, to another later on of a thousand warriors in gold armor charging against another thousand warriors in metallic black. With its brilliant storyline, glorious production, and extraordinary performances, CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER stands as a major triumph of modern film-making.

by Aberjhani, author of "The Bridge of Silver Wings"


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How is this rated so low? cool316
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