Luxury Car (film)
|Directed by||Wang Chao|
|Produced by||Sylvain Bursztejn
|Written by||Wang Chao|
|Music by||Xiao He|
|Edited by||Tao Wen|
May 22, 2006
Luxury Car (Chinese: 江城夏日; pinyin: Jiāng chéng xià rì; literally: "River City Summer Days") is a 2006 film directed by Wang Chao. The film was produced by China's Bai Bu Ting Media and France's Rosem Films, and in association with Arte France Cinéma.
The film follows an old man from the countryside who goes to Wuhan to search for his missing son, who his dying wife has requested to see one last time. In Wuhan, he meets his daughter, a karaoke bar escort who introduces him to an old police officer who offers to help. It soon becomes apparent to both the father and the policeman that the mobsters running the daughter's karaoke bar and the son's disappearance are linked.
- Tian Yuan, as Li Yanhong, a young woman from the countryside who has moved to the city in search of a better life. She finds herself, however, working as a prostitute in a karaoke bar instead.
- Wu Youcai, as Li Qiming, Li Yanhong's father, an elderly schoolteacher who has come to Wuhan in search of his son.
- Li Yiqing, as a policeman, an aging detective who has agreed to help Li Yanhong in his search
- Huang He, as He Ge the owner of the Karaoke bar and Li Yanhong's "boyfriend"
- Li Li, as A Li, another prostitute and Li Yanhong's roommate.
Luxury Car is the third film in Wang's informal trilogy on life in modern China following The Orphan of Anyang (2001) and Day and Night (2004). The concept for the film and its focus on parents who have become disconnected from their children, came about, according to Wang, after he discovered that his mother had contracted cancer. Wang has also stated what his socially conscious intentions were behind the film:
|“||The gap between the rich and poor, the distance which separates people from happiness, the contradictions between the social system inherited from the past and the burdens of the present: these are problems that I myself, as a full-fledged member of the people, feel all the weight and intensity of. That's what made me decide to shoot the picture.||”|
The film was shot and takes place almost entirely within the city of Wuhan in central China's Hubei province. Director Wang Chau noted that Wuhan represents to him, a "very typical Chinese city," in particular its mix of urban and rural, modern and traditional.
The main cast in addition, were all locals from the city, including the actors playing the father, the police officer and the daughter.
Outside of the film festival circuit, Luxury Car remains little seen. For those audiences that have seen the film, the reaction has been muted praise. The Hollywood Reporter's Dwayne Byrge, for example, after seeing the film at Cannes praised Luxury Car's cast, in particular Wu Youcai as the father and Chinese pop star Tian Yuan in the role of the daughter, but overall found the film "predictable and narratively uninspired."
- "River City" is in reference to the city of Wuhan which sits upon the confluence of the Yangtze and Han rivers.
- "Festival de Cannes: Luxury Car". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-12-15.
- McCarthy, Todd (2006-05-28). "Cannes hops to 'Barley'". Variety. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
- "Luxury Car Pressbook" (PDF). Celluloid Dreams. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
- Chen Wen (2006-12-23). "Rising Stars". The Beijing Review. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
- that's Beijing staff (2006-06-30). "Five Questions for Wang Chao, director of Luxury Car". that's Beijing. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
- Elley, Derek (2006-05-22). "Luxury Car". Variety. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
- Byrge, Dwayne (2006-05-24). "Luxury Car". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 2007-04-16. Retrieved 2007-08-06.