movie film review | chris tookey


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  Aftershock Review
Tookey's Rating
5 /10
Average Rating
6.50 /10
Daoming Chen, Chen Li, Yi Lu

Directed by: Feng Xiaogang
Written by: Feng Xiaogang. Based on the novel by Zhang Ling.

Released: 2010
Origin: China
Colour: C
Length: 135

Big and bold - but subtle, it ainít.
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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The biggest-grossing Chinese film of all time is part disaster movie, part soap opera, depicting the 1976 Tangshan earthquake and its aftermath.

240,000 lost their lives, but director Feng Xiaogang focuses on one womanís decision whether to save her seven year-old son or daughter, twins trapped beneath the same pile of rubble.

She chooses the son, but Ė unknown to her Ė the daughter is saved a few days later and chooses to live under a new identity.

The story that unfolds over three decades (and 135 screen minutes) is far from tedious, but it does rather wallow in melodrama and misery. The over-emphatic score wasnít to my taste either.

Iíve seen this called Spielbergian, but you shouldnít expect the subtlety or power of Schindlerís List. Itís schlock, but on such a grand scale that itís quite fun to allow yourself to be carried along on its tsunami of emotion. Millions of Chinese have taken this film to their hearts, and it isnít hard to see why.

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