Japanese businessman, Wada, has been dispatched, by his company,
to examine a small Chinese village in the middle of nowhere
in order to survey a strain of Jade, which is rumoured to
have been found. If the strain is profitable, then his company
will move in and mine the site. On the way to the village
he comes into contact with a Yakuza (Japanese Mafia) member
called Ujjie who is keen to secure the jade, and it's profits
for his organisation. Along with their guide, Shen, the two
set out on a journey that will change their lives forever.
Miike's 1998 movie The Bird People in China (originally
titled Chűgoku no Ch˘jin), illustrates beautifully
why Miike is the master of Japanese cinema. This feel-good
movie takes the viewer on a voyage of their own - if you think
you know Miike's work, then think again.
the Hollywood mangle, Miike is left to switch from genre to
genre. Can you imagine Quentin Tarantino making anything other
than a Quentin Tarantino movie? The same can be said of Martin
Scorsese, or any one of a dozen western directors. The Hollywood
machine doesn't allow directors to play with the art form.
They are instantly pigeonholed in one genre or another so
that their audiences can be spoon-fed the same bland offering,
neatly repackaged, time and time again.
Miike's The Bird People in China will knock his fan
base for six. While the Yakuza has a representative here,
in the form of Ujiie, this is not a movie about the Japanese
Mafia - far from it. While there are echoes of Miike's telltale
violence, they are fleeting and are channelled entirely through
Ujiie, this tale is weaved around businessman Wada and his
first half of the movie is centred around the three travellers
- all from very different backgrounds, and each with their
own goals. From the films opening scene, to its beautifully
heart-warming last, viewers are in for an emotional journey.
There's even the inclusion of an old Scottish folk song: Annie
Laurie, which is haunting under the conditions that it is
include an interview with the director, commentary with Tom
Mes, original trailer, bios/filmographies and previews.
beautiful movie, both visually and emotionally, which will
leave you with a warm glow long after the closing credits
this item online
compare prices online so you get the cheapest
(Please note all prices exclude P&P - although
Streets Online charge a flat £1 fee regardless
of the number of items ordered). Click on the
logo of the desired store below to purchase
NTSC (USA) Edition
All prices correct at time of going to press.