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Chinese Box (1997) - movie overview

Chinese Box (1997)

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Plot Description
Shooting Locations

Release Date
• USA: Apr 17, 1998
DVD Release Date
• R1: Sep 22, 1998

MPAA Rating
Rated R for language and some sexual content.

Running Time
1 hour, 39 minutes

Country France, Japan, USA

Studio Canal Plus, NDF International, WW Productions

More info on

Other Titles
• Chinese Box

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Genre: Romance, Drama, Love, Political, Prostitution, Culture Clash, Melodrama, Urban

Plot: Hong Kong-born American director Wayne Wang returned to the city in 1990 to make the gritty street-level thriller LIFE IS CHEAP...BUT TOILET PAPER IS EXPENSIVE. In 1997, with the city on the verge of the British handing the colony back to the Chinese, he returned for a different look. In CHINESE BOX, Jeremy Irons plays John, an English journalist moving among the Chinese business elite and British officials at expensive nightclubs. However, the politics of transition are seen through the prism of his personal relationships. He is in love with Vivian (Gong Li), a woman he meets in Beijing who’s now working at a club owned by Chang (Michael Hui), the man she wants to marry. But Chang wants to become respectable and won’t marry her because of her checkered past. After a personal crisis, John goes out with a camcorder to capture images of the last days of British rule. He becomes fascinated by Jean, a mysterious woman who hides half her face behind a scarf as she darts through the streets aggressively selling strange items. Played with a manic verve by martial arts star Maggie Cheung, Jean comes to represent everything that is strange and enigmatic about Hong Kong. Taken from a story by Paul Theroux and written by Jean-Claude Carrière, a frequent collaborator with Luis Buñuel,

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 Directed by
Wayne Wang
Maid in Manhattan, Smoke, The Joy Luck Club
 Written by
Larry Gross
True Crime, We Don't Live Here Anymore, Streets of Fire
Jeremy Irons
The Lion King, Kingdom of Heaven, Die Hard: With a Vengeance
Maggie Cheung
Hero, In the Mood for Love, 2046
Ruben Blades
Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Predator 2, The Devil's Own
Jared Harris
Ocean's Twelve, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Lost in Space
Li Gong
Memoirs of a Geisha, 2046, Raise the Red Lantern
Michael Hui
The Cannonball Run, Haomen yeyan, Gwai ma kwong seung kuk
Chaplin Chang
The Counting House
 Music By
Graeme Revell
Sin City, From Dusk Till Dawn, Pitch Black

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Baraka (1992)
Deceiver (1997)

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