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Kong Zi
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Confucius (2010) More at IMDbPro »Kong Zi (original title)


Overview

User Rating:
6.2/10   2,580 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Khan Chan (written by) &
Qitao Jiang (written by) ...
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Contact:
View company contact information for Confucius on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
28 January 2010 (China) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
The life story of the highly-influential Chinese philosopher, Confucius. | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
3 wins & 6 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Covers all bases See more (30 total) »

Cast

 

Yun-Fat Chow ... Confucius

Xun Zhou ... Nanzi
Jianbin Chen ... Ji Sunsi
Yi Lu ... Ji Sunfei
Quan Ren ... Yan Hui
Kaili Zhang
Lu Yao ... Lu Jun
Ran Chen
Zhenyu Qiao ... Son of Confucius
Huang Jiao
Ban Wang ... Shu Sunwu

Directed by
Mei Hu 
 
Writing credits
Khan Chan (written by) &
Qitao Jiang (written by) &
Yanjiang He (written by) &
Mei Hu (written by)

Produced by
Bo-Chu Chui .... producer
Sanping Han .... executive producer
Rachel Liu .... executive producer
John Sham .... executive producer
Punhoi Yu .... executive producer
 
Original Music by
Jiping Zhao 
 
Cinematography by
Peter Pau 
 
Art Direction by
Chaoxiang Lin 
Huaiqing Mao 
 
Costume Design by
Chung Man Yee 
 
Visual Effects by
Andy Chen .... cg supervisor
Ahdee Chiu .... compositor
Pei-Zhi Huang .... effects technical director
Liwen Liu .... junior compositor
Yan Zhou .... animator
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Edmond Chan .... first assistant camera
Luen Wai Chan .... dolly grip
Jimmy Fok .... key grip
Patrick Ho .... camera & lighting department coordinator
Kenny Lam .... camera operator
Tak-Shing Lee .... lighting technician
Wing Yin Ng .... assistant camera
Simon J. Young .... second assistant camera
 
Other crew
Patrick Ho .... post production coordinator
Xiaolong Zhang .... ancient etiquette advisor
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Kong Zi" - China (original title)
"Confucius Teachings" - Japan (English title) (imdb display title)
See more »
Runtime:
125 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

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Movie Connections:

FAQ

What are the differences between the British Version and the Uncensored Version?
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39 out of 53 people found the following review useful.
Covers all bases, 24 March 2010
Author: yakuzaplacemat1215 from Aulendorf

First, let me preface my review...

Confucius was a man that I admired as a kid. When I was young, I read many of his biographies and loved all that he did, particularly the articulate ways the Renaissance Man expressed the China's desire for freedom and equality. He was my favorite Statesman. I still remember when I first learned that he owned hundreds slaves, in direct contradiction to his written words. It was shocking, as I discovered that one of my all time heroes had such a double standard in his life.

Having said all that, I hoped that this documentary would accomplish two things: Unearth the truth, and dive deeper into this intriguing man's life. Both goals were met.

Using narration and the perspective of multiple historians, the documentary covers virtually every significant aspect and passion of Confucius's life, including both common knowledge stories and lesser known events. Among the more interesting lore are his early political years, the vastness of his knowledge, and his late-life correspondence with erstwhile rival Lu Tzi. Controversial issues such as Confucius's alleged affair and illegitimate children are addressed in a fair way. No definitive conclusion is stated, but all opinions are given, and those thoughts match up with the information I have found. The only thing lacking was a snapshot of Confucius's religious beliefs. To my knowledge, he was a Deist rather than a true Buddhist. That point was alluded to, but never elaborated upon.

A theme of the documentary was the contradiction that seemed to run through Confucius's life. The primary instance was his duplicity in being a champion for freedom and equality, yet simultaneously owning hundreds of slaves. To compound matters, Confucius also harbored complex racist tendencies, although not in a malicious way. Given his time period, I don't know that these pitfalls taint his reputation, but they definitely tint it a darker hue.

I won't elaborate on all of the other stories told, but many were new and fascinating. History such as his battle to be elected president, and stories like the fact that his tombstone contains no mention of his reign, or his financial troubles late in life. All of this information adds up to paint what appears to be an unbiased and accurate portrait of one of the China's great yet flawed men.

If you've seen any of Mei Hu's work ("Army Nurse", "On the Other Side of the Bridge", etc.), then you are familiar with his trademark style of film-making that is present here. He once again utilizes the panning of still photographs and paintings, often accompanied by the appropriate sound effects. A slight twist is that Hu also uses many beautiful shots, both still and action, of modern-day Peking and other places. This is a wise choice, as those pictures, which are recent but also period, add a vivacity to the film.

The music was also standard Mei Hu. He picked a handful of tunes, including hymns and Tang Dynasty songs, then had them played in a variety of ways to provide a suitable soundtrack. His choice of the hymn "Yuanli zhanzhengde niandai" as a primary theme did strike me as odd though, considering Confucius's strong Deist beliefs that contradicted traditional Buddhism.

Aside from the three-hour documentary, there are two short featurettes on the DVD, not available on the BluRay. The first is an eight-minute glimpse inside Hu's film-making world. The second is a ten-minute conversation with Hu about his work. Both are definitely worth watching if you like any of his films, as they provide good insight into his processes. If anything, the two featurettes are too short, but worthwhile nonetheless.

The downside to this doc was that it didn't suck you in. It felt more like reading a good history textbook. Interesting stuff, but occasionally I zoned out. If you don't have an interest in Confucius or early Chinese history, then you will probably find the film dry and boring.

Even if you are a history buff, I don't know that you need to purchase this DVD. It's good stuff, but I don't feel it can be viewed multiple times. I borrowed it from the library, and that (or a rental) is my recommended route.

Bottom Line: This is for history buffs and for people interested in Confucius. 8 of 10 from one who had that interest. And fans of Chow Yun-Fat will surely not be bored.

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