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Floating City [Blu-ray]

6 customer reviews

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(Aug 20, 2013)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In the early 1990s, Bo Wah Chuen (Aaron Kwok) attracts great attention as a business executive in the Imperial East India Company of Hong Kong, his prominence overshadowing even that of his British superiors. However, twenty years ago, when he takes the company s entry test, all he has to show for himself is the plea, I could read and write . His rise to prominence has as much to do with British s imminent return of Hong Kong to China, as it has to do with his considerable ability. To the astonishment of many, Bo Wah Chuen looks nothing like a Chinese. As a child, he has to endure much jeering as he looks nothing like his six siblings. People are amazed at the sight of a Caucasian looking fisherman in colonial Hong Kong. Though he is desperate to discover the origin of his peculiar features, every time he asks his parents, all he could get out of them is a good beating. Chuen s father dies in a fishing accident. His mother (Josie Ho/Nina Paw) incurs his father s debts, forcing her to send her older children off to an orphanage, and the younger ones to various foster homes, in order to lessen the financial burden. Meanwhile, thanks to his friend Lau Chiu Lik (Joe Leung), Chuen is initiated into the Imperial East India Company. Starting out as a lowly office assistant, Chuen gradually climbs up the company s hierarchy, while attending night school on the side. During this crucial period, he is befriended by Fion (Annie Liu), a westernized, upper-class lady who provides Chuen with much needed advice on his conduct in the parochial world of a colonial trading company. In the meantime, however, his wife Tai (Charlie Yeung), similarly from a fishing background, feels increasingly isolated from this new reality. With Chuen s help, his mother turns herself from an illiterate wife of a fisherman to the first woman in Hong Kong to acquire a boating license. The family is finally united. On the eve of Hong Kong s handover to China, as the British flag is lowered down in the stormy weather, Chuen discovers the secret of his origin.


English Subtitles


"Ambitious...personal and epic" --BeyondHollywood

"A worthwhile and accomplished film" --BeyondHollywood

"Engaging and effective" --LoveHKFilm

"A worthwhile and accomplished film" --BeyondHollywood

"Engaging and effective" --LoveHKFilm

Product Details

  • Actors: Aaron Kwok, David Peatfield, Josie Ho, Leon Hill, Seith Leslie
  • Directors: Ho Yim
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Dolby, NTSC, THX, Widescreen
  • Language: Chinese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Well Go USA
  • DVD Release Date: August 20, 2013
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00BOVL72Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #164,356 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By C.Wallace VINE VOICE on December 1, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
This is a stirring movie. It tells the story of Bo Wah Chuen from his infancy through his rise to the top Chinese position in the Imperial East India Company based in Hong Kong. The story is fictional, but an endnote claims that it is "based on real life characters." The adult Bo is brilliantly portrayed by Aaron Kwok. Kwok presents a somewhat shy, but tough as steel character who overcomes a difficult childhood through his own hard work and determination.

Bo's mother was Chinese and desperately poor. She sold the newborn Bo to a woman who had just miscarried her own baby. This woman turned out to be a great mother for Bo. She raised him exactly as she would raise her own children. Bo's birth father was British; hence Bo was often insulted, called a "half-breed" or "mixed." This birth father had no contact with Bo. The insults came from both the Chinese around Bo and the British who mocked him as he worked his way up in their world.

There are four sterling performances by women in this film. Josie Ho is Bo's adoptive mother when she was young. Paw Hee Ching plays Bo's adoptive mother during the latter part of her life. Charlie Yeung is Tai, Bo's wife. Annie Liu plays Fion, a Hong Kong businesswoman who possesses overwhelming charm and confidence. She opens her door for Bo, but he does not walk in because he loves Tai.

The director, Yim Ho, put together a seamless classic. The cinematography is spectacular, with each shot carefully planned and executed.

It's in Cantonese with English subtitles. Most highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By ファンギャル on June 12, 2014
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Having subscriptions to Netflix and Amazon Prime, etc., there are a lot of times when I just do a broad search and decide to watch something. I saw "Floating City" on Netflix, and for some reason (aside from wanting to watch a Hong Kong film), I decided to watch it. I'm VERY glad that I did. This is one of the best, most touching dramas I've seen since "Beasts of the Southern Wild," which I also watched for the first time not too long ago. Right after watching this film on Netflix, I ordered it on Amazon, and watched it again as soon as it arrived.

Even before having lived in Asia for several years and having gotten my degree in Asian Studies, I've loved Asian cinema since adolescence, especially films from Hong Kong and China. I find that Asian acting (style), particularly Japanese and Korean, can be very divergent from the Western style of acting, particularly in tv dramas; sometimes I do not like it, and frankly, sometimes I feel somewhat embarrassed, because the acceptable style there is what the West would see as "bad" acting. That said, I find that I like the acting in Hong Kong films the most, and this film did not disappoint. I would say that a great deal of the acting is strong, especially by the lead, Aaron Kwok. He made me feel the emotions of his character clearly, as did the different women who played his mother. The wife character was also pretty good, but sometimes she seemed a bit spastic. Most of the other characters did fine to passable, but Annie Liu was probably the worst. She was pretty, yes, and I got the role she was trying to play - rich, sexy, internationally-experienced, stylish, English-speaking young woman - but she overdid it almost most of the time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Walden Thoreau on December 11, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a great film. It is character driven with wonderfully touching and reflective moments. The acting and cinematography are first rate. One negative review found it boring which might be the case if you are not paying attention or are expecting an action film. But if you focus on the movie, it will draw you in with a smart, involving and moving storyline that covers several decades in the life of the principled lead character, who rises from poverty to build a successful career and a better life for himself and his family. Watch it and you will be rewarded.
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