49 user 52 critic

The Vertical Ray of the Sun (2000)

Mùa hè chieu thang dung (original title)
PG-13 | | Drama | 24 May 2000 (France)
1:42 | Trailer
With the brilliant Vietnamese summer as a setting Vertical Ray of the Sun is beautiful from beginning to end. The plot centres around three sisters, two of whom are happily married (or so ... See full summary »


Anh Hung Tran (as Tran Anh Hung)


Anh Hung Tran (as Tran Anh Hung)
3 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Nu Yên-Khê Tran Nu Yên-Khê Tran ... Lien (as Tran Nu Yên-Khê)
Nhu Quynh Nguyen ... Suong
Khanh Le Khanh Le ... Khanh (as Le Khanh)
Quang Hai Ngo Quang Hai Ngo ... Hai
Chu Hung Chu Hung ... Quoc
Manh Cuong Tran Manh Cuong Tran ... Kien
Tuân Anh Lê Tuân Anh Lê ... Tuan
Ngoc Dung Le Ngoc Dung Le ... Huong
Doan Viet Ha Doan Viet Ha ... Ngan
Long Le Vu Long Le Vu ... Hoa
Lam Tung Hoang Lam Tung Hoang ... Toan
Huy Cong Nguyen Huy Cong Nguyen ... The Fisherman
Nu Lang Khe Tran Nu Lang Khe Tran ... Little Mouse
Hung Be Hung Be ... Quoc's son
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Thi Hai Yen Do Thi Hai Yen Do ... Mui


With the brilliant Vietnamese summer as a setting Vertical Ray of the Sun is beautiful from beginning to end. The plot centres around three sisters, two of whom are happily married (or so it appears). The youngest sister is single and living with her cute older brother, whom she is desperately in love with. A second sister is married to a man who has another woman and child elsewhere whom he loves just as much as his wife -with a few conditions, she agrees to carry on with the marriage. The third sister and her husband are overjoyed to discover she is pregnant, and though he is tempted, her husband remains loyal to her. Charming, slow-paced, face value, family saga film. Written by K Wedgwood

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


One day. Many lives. A family. Lovers. An eternity. A hope. A delay. A secret. Happiness. Lies. One summer.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic elements and some sex-related material | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Referenced in At the Movies: Venice Film Festival 2010 (2010) See more »


Cuoi Cung Cho Mot Tinh Yeu
Written by Cong Son Trinh
Performed by Vu Tranh Xuan and Nguyen Quang
See more »

User Reviews

23 January 2003 | by paperbasketSee all my reviews

As a Vietnamese, I have to begin by thanking Tran Anh Hung for all that he has done for Vietnamese cinema. He has beautifully brought to the world an image of Vietnam other than that of some evil Communists in American war movies.

Now onto my review of this film.

It is a beautifully shot movie. The fresh, cool colors through the movie really do transport the viewer to somewhere similar to a tropical paradise. The story is slow but the writing is smart. Things are happening even though you feel like nothing has happened. The film is about 3 sisters and their adventures in love. The two older are married and are facing infidelity in their relationships. The youngest is still dating other men, although her close relationship with her brother only suggests some disturbing truth.

The acting is the movie is restrained but mostly good. My only problem is with Tran Nu Yen Khe as the youngest sister. I know that she is the director's wife, thus she appears in all his movie. But is this necessary, Tran Anh Hung? She is certainly a beautiful actress, but her Vietnamese is horrible. While everyone in the movie is speaking flawless, authentic Vietnamese, she struggles as if reading with a monotone in an accent that clearly indicates that she never learns Vietnamese in Vietnam. This has completely thrown me off during the movie. Whenever she speaks, I am reminded that this is a movie and not real. In Mui Du Du Xanh, the first film of Tran Anh Hung, I don't have a real problem because she speaks a total of maybe 3 lines and those are from reading a book so it doesn't bother me. But in Cyclo, while the actors and actress who play her family speak with a specific accent from a province in Vietnam (Quang Nam), she again speaks in a monotone with an accent of a foreigner. And it happens again here in this film. This problem is equivalent to an actor who plays an authentic Texan and speaks with a European accent. It just doesn't make sense. Of course, to people who don't speak Vietnamese, this is not a problem. But to a Vietnamese like myself, I can think of many other actresses who are much better for the job.

But don't let my ranting about Tran Nu Yen Khe discourage you from seeing this movie. It will be one of the most beautiful film you have ever seen and I think you will like it.

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Vietnam | France | Germany



Release Date:

24 May 2000 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Vertical Ray of the Sun See more »

Filming Locations:

Halong Bay, Vietnam See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$32,248, 8 July 2001

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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