Zhang Yimou is director with marginal talent though he possesses an uncanny flair for visuals. Which is why he blew the world’s minds directing the opening of the 2008 China Olympics. Which is also why his movies are usually hit or miss depending on who he’s collaborating with.
Hero was a piece of pretentious crap that got popular because of the astounding martial arts direction by Tony Ching Siu Tong, really pretty cinematography and equally pretentious critics. Raise The Red Lantern took me 3 viewings to complete because I kept falling asleep. House of Flying Daggers was an empty waste of time which had an amazing soundtrack by Shigeru Umbayashi and really pretty cinematography. To Live is a great film because of the script adapted from a great novel about a really shitty life in Socialist China(Yes, China was socialist. It has never really been communist. Don’t be fooled by people with agendas.) and the extraordinary acting talents of Ge You and that chick from the Miami Vice remake. Red Sorghum was a fluke.
THIS MOVIE WAS WORSE THAN VENOM!!! FUCK!!!
If you see this movie on netflix and read the reviews of critics gushing over a movie because it’s shot “artistically” in a language they don’t understand and you’re tempted to watch it, remember he also directed that piece of crap called The Great Wall starring Matt Damon.