7.3/10
4,633
25 user 30 critic

Cyclo (1995)

Xích Lô (original title)
When a poor bicycle-taxi driver has his cyclo stolen, he is forced into a life of crime. Meanwhile, his sister becomes a sex worker.

Director:

Anh Hung Tran (as Tran Anh Hung)

Writer:

Anh Hung Tran (as Tran Anh Hung)
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4 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Le Van Loc Le Van Loc ... Cyclo
Tony Chiu-Wai Leung ... Poet (as Tony Chiu Wai Leung)
Nu Yên-Khê Tran Nu Yên-Khê Tran ... Sister (as Tran Nu Yên-Khê)
Nhu Quynh Nguyen ... Madam
Hoang Phuc Nguyen Hoang Phuc Nguyen ... Tooth
Ngo Vu Quang Hal Ngo Vu Quang Hal ... Knife
Tuyet Ngan Nguyen Tuyet Ngan Nguyen ... Happy Woman
Doan Viet Ha Doan Viet Ha ... Sad Woman
Bjuhoang Huy Bjuhoang Huy ... Crazy Son
Vo Vinh Phuc Vo Vinh Phuc ... Cyclo's Friend
Le Kinh Huy Le Kinh Huy ... Grandfather
Pham Ngoc Lieu Pham Ngoc Lieu ... Little Sister
Tuân Anh Lê Tuân Anh Lê ... Handcuff Man
Le Cong Tuan Anh Le Cong Tuan Anh ... Drunken Dancer
Van Day Nguyen Van Day Nguyen ... Lullaby Man
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Storyline

A young man who struggles through life by earning some money with his bicycle-taxi in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh city) gets contact to a group of criminals. They introduce him to the mafia-world of drugs and crime. Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From the director of the Academy Award Nominated film "The Scent of Green Papaya" comes a shocking new vision of beauty, passion and power.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Made and banned in Vietnam. Criticised as too 'westernised' in its gritty and unrelenting portrayal of urban poverty in the country. The film has nevertheless received international acclaim, winning the Golden Lion Award in Venice in 1995. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dog Park (1998) See more »

User Reviews

 
Cinematically Marvelous, But...
14 December 2007 | by kayaker36See all my reviews

Another reviewer correctly pointed out this film's weakness: the script. The story starts out strong then about a third of the way through it hops the track.

After that, if you can tell what is going on and above all WHY, you're pretty good--or friends with the author.

The government of the People's Republic of Vietnam cooperated in making this film for, I suspect, political reasons. Specifically, to paint the Chinese and China in a bad light. The setting is Cholon, the Chinatown section of the old city of Saigon, the former capital of the Republic of (South) Vietnam. Saigon is now Ho Chi Minh City of course and the Chinese are almost all gone, fled from the persecution that preceded and followed the 1979 Sino-Vietnamese border war. Even in 1994 when the picture was shot relations between China and Vietnam were tense. This movie depicts Cholon as a center of drug trafficking, vice, thievery and murder in which the U.S. dollar is the most desired currency.

The camera work by Frenchman Benoit Delhomme is pure artistry. Production values are high. The leading lady Tran Nhu Yen-Khe is absolutely riveting--her exotic beauty the best thing by far about the picture. There are some interesting backgrounds, particularly a short interlude where Poet, played by Hong Kong actor Tony Leung, and Sister (Ms. Yen-Khe) escape the filthy and impoverished inner city and spend a day in the countryside. It is no accident I am sure that some of the French architecture that still stands is featured.

The minor roles are convincingly played, the characters sharply defined for all their brief appearances. It is at the center that the film's weaknesses are most evident.


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Details

Country:

Vietnam | France | Hong Kong

Language:

Vietnamese

Release Date:

2 August 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cyclo See more »

Filming Locations:

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$38,109, 4 August 1996

Gross USA:

$284,692

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$284,692
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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