Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (film)
|Snow Flower and the Secret Fan Dance|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Wayne Wang|
Michael K. Ray
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan|
by Lisa See
|Music by||Rachel Portman|
|Edited by||Deirdre Slevin|
IDG China Creative Media Limited
Fox Searchlight Pictures (US)|
Pinnacle Films (Australia)
|Language||Mandarin Chinese, English, Korean|
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan is a 2011 historical drama film based on the novel of the same name written by Lisa See. Directed by Wayne Wang, the film stars Gianna Jun, Li Bingbing, Archie Kao, Vivian Wu, and Hugh Jackman.
In nineteenth century China, two girls named Snow Flower (Gianna Jun) and Lily (Li Bing Bing) are forever bonded together as sworn sisters. They are paired as laotong by a matchmaker who is also responsible for arranging their marriages. They are isolated by their families and communicate by writing in a secret sisterly language, Nü shu (a historical practice in China in that period) on a unique Chinese fan that Snow Flower possesses.
Meanwhile, in the present day Shanghai, their descendants Sophia Liao and Nina Wei struggle with the intimacy of their own pure and intense childhood friendship. As teenagers, Sophia and Nina were introduced to the idea of laotong, and they signed a traditional laotong contract on the cover of Canto-pop Faye Wong's album Fu Zao (Restless in English). Faye Wong was their favorite singer and their liberated dancing to the "degenerate" sounds of the cheerful refrain "la cha bor" was one of the reasons Sophia's stepmother attempted to separate them. Eventually they are separated but come together again when Sophia falls into a coma after being struck by a taxi while cycling. Reunited at long last, they must come to understand the story of the strong and close ancestral connection hidden from them in the folds of the antique white silk fan or lose one another forever in the process.
- Gianna Jun as Sophia/Snow Flower
- Li Bingbing as Nina/Lily
- Vivian Wu as Aunt
- Hugh Jackman as Arthur
- Archie Kao as Sebastian
- Wu Jiang as Butcher
- Angela Evans as Ballroom guest
- Jennifer Lim (voice) as Snow Flower
- Christina Jun (voice) as Sophie
The film received generally negative reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, it has a 21% approval rating, based on 87 reviews. On Metacritic, it has a score of 42 out of a possible 100, based on 31 reviews.
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