Gong Li

I just finished watching "Curse of the Golden Flower" starring Chow Yun Fat (King & I) and Gong Li. I'd forgotten what a powerful force that woman is. If you saw "Memoirs of a Geisha," she played the aging jealous geisha.

I went through a Chinese movie phase and saw a number of Li movies. She is a ravishing chameleon. Meryl Streep has nothing on her. Li can be totally convincing as a country peasant or a conniving empress, as she was in "Curse."

She plays a peasant woman in "The Story of Qui Ju."

In "Raise the Red Lantern," she plays the fourth wife of a rich man, brought from the countryside. He psychologically tortures them all by extending, then withdrawing favor at random, causing murderous jealousies between the four women. Four is the unlucky number in East Asia, four, a homonym for "death."

And here she is as the woman who comes between two opera performers in "Farewell My Concubine:"

And finally, as the Empress in 10th Century Tang Dynasty in "Curse." Chow Yun Fat is fabulous and so is the scenery. It'll please the testosterone crowd, too.

See her just for her beautiful features, but also for her fierceness and control. Oh, and by the way? She's 42.


1 comment:

girlymama said...

LOVE her!!! She is 42?? Seriously???
Raise the Red Lantern was amazing.