7.1/10
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Goodbye, Dragon Inn (2003)

Bu san (original title)
On a dark, wet night a historic and regal Chinese cinema sees its final film. Together with a small handful of souls they bid "Goodbye, Dragon Inn."

Director:

Ming-liang Tsai

Writers:

Sung Hsi (additional narrative), Ming-liang Tsai
13 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Kang-sheng Lee ... Hsiao-Kang
Shiang-chyi Chen ... Ticket Woman
Kiyonobu Mitamura Kiyonobu Mitamura ... Japanese tourist
Tien Miao ... Self
Chun Shih ... Self
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Chao-jung Chen
Yi Cheng Lee
Kuei-Mei Yang ... Peanut Eating Woman
Edit

Storyline

A Japanese tourist takes refuge from a rainstorm inside a once-popular movie theater, a decrepit old barn of a cinema that is screening a martial arts classic, King Hu's 1966 "Dragon Inn." Even with the rain bucketing down outside, it doesn't pull much of an audience -- and some of those who have turned up are less interested in the movie than in the possibility of meeting a stranger in the dark. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Taiwan

Language:

Mandarin | Min Nan | Japanese

Release Date:

12 December 2003 (Taiwan) See more »

Also Known As:

Goodbye, Dragon Inn See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,322, 19 September 2004

Gross USA:

$35,120

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,029,643
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Homegreen Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The theater used for the film was actually on the brink of being closed, and shortly before the film was released it was indeed closed, in an strange example of life imitating art. See more »

Quotes

The man: Do you know this theater is haunted?
[pause]
The man: This theater is haunted.
[pause]
The man: Ghosts.
[walks away]
Japanese tourist: [calling out to departing man] I'm Japanese.
The man: Good bye.
Japanese tourist: Good bye.
See more »

Connections

References Impostor (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Chong Feng
by Ge Lan
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A lost masterpiece and an essential gay classic
14 April 2016 | by MOscarbradleySee all my reviews

A tone poem on the nature of cinema as an entity, an art-form and a place, Ming-Liang Tsai's "Goodbye, Dragon Inn" is unlike almost any other film you will see. To say it will appeal mostly to people who love cinema may not necessarily be true for here is a film that challenges what many people believe cinema should be; entertainment perhaps, something communal and if we view it as a means of expression surely that expression should be more universal than what we get here and yet for many of us, "Goodbye, Dragon Inn" will strike us as being intensely personal. For many, this is a film that will stir up what drew us to cinema in the first place.

It's almost totally silent, reminding us that in its infancy cinema was silent. We hear snatches of dialogue from the film within the film, (the martial arts classic "Dragon Inn"), that is being shown in the cinema where almost all of 'the action' takes place but there are no sub-titles. There are only a handful of characters in this cavernous auditorium but they don't communicate. If there is any unification between these people it's through the medium of cinema. There is the lame woman who acts as ticket collector and cleaner, the projectionist, an elderly man and his grandson and a number of gay men who cruise the cinema for sex, (though far from explicit these scenes have a remarkable homo-erotic charge making this an essential gay film), and perhaps a ghost.

You could say, of course, that few of these people are there to see the film but were Duane and Sonny there to watch "Red River" in "The Last Picture Show" or was it just a ritual that has to be adhered to as part of a larger scheme, (in their case, growing up; here staving off loneliness). It's also a film about looking; seeing this in a cinema not unlike the one on screen we become part of the experience and it is clear from the extracts from "Dragon Inn" that Ming-Liang Tsai is very much in love with movies.

Nothing really happens and the film moves at a snail's pace yet this is the least boring of art-house movies; it's an immersive experience and whether you see it alone or with others, if you have any feeling for cinema at all, you can't fail but to be touched by it though I suspect, for many, it will be like watching paint dry.


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