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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Movies
The Founding of an Army
    2017-August-4  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

Starring: Liu Ye, Zhu Yawen, Huang Zhizhong, Ma Tinayu, Zhang Hanyu, Wang Jingchun, Yang Dapeng, Wallace Huo Director: Andrew Lau

“THE Founding of an Army” is a follow-up to “The Founding of a Republic” (2009, about the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949) and “Beginning of the Great Revival” (2011, about the formation of the Chinese Communist Party in 1921). Just like the company’s two previous outings, “The Taking of Tiger Mountain” (2014) and “Operation Mekong” (2016), directed by Hongkongers Tsui Hark and Dante Lam respectively, “The Founding of an Army” is a genre-fueled spectacle with scintillating action scenes and self-sacrificing heroes aplenty.

Directed by Andrew Lau of “Infernal Affairs” fame, it is carefully calibrated to fascinate China’s young cinema-going demographic, casting the country’s most popular heartthrobs to strike poses and play hero in the film’s stupendously choreographed battle scenes. Such star power and firepower is perhaps necessary to attract younger generations with minimum knowledge or interest of the political upheavals of 1920s China.

The film was released July 28 to mark the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the Chinese Communist Party’s armed forces.

“Army” is anchored in three historical events of 1927, deployed here to represent the Chinese Red Army’s foundational myths: its revolutionary credo, military prowess and moral selflessness.

The film begins April 12, 1927, the day when the right-wing military leader Chiang Kai-shek sent his combat units and his underworld associates to annihilate left-wing activists in Shanghai. The bloody purge convinced the Communists of the need to create their own military forces, and Lau offers an audacious, highly stylized way of depicting this.

By switching the action from the deadly carnage on the streets, to a standoff in a church between officers with different loyalties and a deadly dinner in a mobster’s mansion, he infuses “Army” with the genre gloss he has honed to near-perfection in his thrillers and gangster flicks (such as “The Last Tycoon,” also set in Shanghai in the 1920s).

The visceral violence in this opening salvo — soldiers machine-gunning and beheading demonstrators, a warship bombarding a left-leaning publishing house, mobsters hacking activists to death on wide boulevards — continues unabated in the showpiece. Set on the day when the Chinese Communists displayed their steel will by rebelling against and defeating the right-leaning authorities, the Nanchang Uprising of Aug. 1 is re-enacted with remarkably executed stunts, pyrotechnics and plenty of digitally enhanced aerial shots.

Linking the set pieces are the scenes depicting the conversations, collaborations and conspiracies involving the major political figures on both sides of the political divide. Liu Ye, who starred in “Revival,” returns as the roguish, romantic and guru-like Mao Zedong. Other personalities — whose ages in 1927 appear onscreen alongside their names as they make their entrance — are embodied by a younger cast of pop idols.

The movie is now being screened in Shenzhen. (SD-Agencies)

 

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