Thursday, August 12, 2010


Some dialogue in Mandarin Chinese with English subtitles

Mao Zedong (b. 1893) led the People’s Republic of China from it establishment in 1949 until his death in 1976. In China he is officially held in high regard as a great revolutionary, political strategist, military mastermind, and savior of the nation. In 1966 he was instrumental in creating the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution that resulted in social, political, and economic upheaval transforming the country from an agrarian society into a major world power. Only after the Chairman’s death did relations with the West begin to thaw.

Wen Bin Huang: 11-year-old Li Cunxi
Joan Chen: Li’s mother
Bruce Greenwood: Ben Stevenson, Artistic Director of the Huston Ballet Company
Chi Cao: the 18-year-old Li
Amanda Schull: a fellow ballet student, Elizabeth Mackey
Camilla Vergotis: Mary McKendry, an Australian ballerina
Kyle MacLachlan: Texan lawyer Charles Foster

This true story of a young boy, one of seven children of a Chinese peasant family, who goes on to become a famous ballet dancer is told in chronological order with a few flashbacks.

Definitely a “must-see” for ballet fans but for those who are not, the ballet scenes are kept to a minimum so no one should become bored with the dance sequences and maybe even get to appreciate the fact that are all beautifully choreographed.

The stunning cinematography coupled with a delightful score serve as a wonderful backdrop to this enchanting tale.

for a brief violent image, some sensuality, language and incidental smoking.

Ben gets some money out of an ATM but the American $20 bills he receives are the modern day ones only introduced some twenty years after this event took place.

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