Hu King, Hsing Lee, Han-Hsiang Li, Ching-jui Pai / TW, 1970 / 140 min.
Four overwhelming ghost stories in this portmanteau film with a contribution by King Hu. The costume dramas explore a range of feelings of people confronted with the supernatural: joy, anger, sadness and happiness. Hu’s masterly short film Anger was adapted from a famous Peking opera. Hu deftly captures the showdown between political schemers, avengers and vagabonds inside an inn.
Li Han-hsiang's Happiness, inspired by The Strange Tales of Liaozhai, tells the story of a benign ghost. In Pai Ching-jui's Joy and Lee Hsing”s Sadness the encounters between mortal men and female ghosts prove to be fatal.
The martial arts films of the highly influential film director King Hu (1931-1997) lifted Chinese cinema to new technical and artistic heights. The Taiwan Film Institute has recently restored three major works by King Hu, which were previously presented at the Film Festivals of Cannes (Dragon Inn and A Touch of Zen) and Venice (Legend of the Mountain). These superb restorations are now screened at EYE.
A number of noted filmmakers have paid tribute to the work of King Hu. Tsai Ming-liang made Goodbye, Dragon Inn in 2003, a film set in the final hours of an old cinema in Taipei that is about to close down and shows King Hu”s sword-fighting classic Dragon Inn. Two veteran actors who played in Hu”s original film also star in Tsai's film. More recently, the Chinese filmmaker Jia Zhangke paid homage to Hu with his film A Touch of Sin (2013). Both films are also screened by EYE.
Hu King, Hsing Lee, Han-Hsiang Li, Ching-jui Pai
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