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Together (2003)

Yun Tang , Peiqi Liu , Kaige Chen  |  PG |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Yun Tang, Peiqi Liu, Hong Chen, Zhiwen Wang, Kaige Chen
  • Directors: Kaige Chen
  • Writers: Kaige Chen, Xiao Lu Xue
  • Producers: Hong Chen, Kaige Chen, Bolun Li, Buting Yang, Ernst Etchie Stroh
  • Format: AC-3, Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Mandarin Chinese (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: November 18, 2003
  • Run Time: 116 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000C2IW7
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #26,045 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Together" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Chen Kaige, director of the OscarÂ(r)-nominated* Farewell My Concubine, composes a richly imagined and 'tender symphony (Screen International) about love, ambition and destiny in China's high-pressure world of classical music. Surging with warmth, humanity and a sense of humor (The Hollywood Reporter), this lyrical, enchanting heartwarmer (Variety) is a 'sure-fire crowd-pleaser (Los Angeles Times)! When violin prodigy Xiaochun and his father headto Beijing seeking fame and fortune, they soon discover a fierce world of cutthroat ambition. But when Xiaochun is adopted by a famous music tutor, success finally seems within reachuntil a shocking discovery begins to unravel his entire world and the boy must make the most difficult choice ofhis life. Can he achieve the fame his father had always hoped for without losing the extraordinary passion that sets him apart? *1993: Foreign Language Film

Director Chen Kaige moves from the epic sweep of Farewell My Concubine to a small, intimate story about a boy and his father--but creates just as rich an emotional impact. Liu Cheng (Liu Peiqi) takes his 13-year-old son Xiaochung (Tang Yun) to Beijing in the hope of finding a teacher who will foster the boy's talent on the violin. The adolescent boy soon becomes infatuated with one of their neighbors, a golddigger named Lili (the lovely Chen Hong), and becomes a pupil of Professor Jiang (Wang Zhiwen). But Liu discovers that a good teacher is not enough; if Xiaochung is to succeed in the world, he must have a teacher with connections--even if this ambition threatens to pull father and son apart. Together would be sappy if it weren't for the emotional honesty of the actors; under Kaige's clean direction, the movie is graceful and deeply moving. --Bret Fetzer

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! Words cannot express... March 18, 2004
This may very well be one of the most fabulous and wonderful movies I've ever seen. By the end of the movie you'll have filled buckets, but these are not the kind of emotionally draining tears as you'd have from, say, To Live by Zhang Yimou. This is a movie about hope, companionship, life, passion, triumph, and love.
But let's not forget music. Actually, it didn't even take half a minute (honestly) of watching this movie for me to realize that it was going to blow me away. Even while the opening credits are rolling, the imagery is spectacular, and the music already has you under its spell. It's gentle, yet it has some sort of... well, "energy" to it. Chen Kaige follows through excellently, keeping this energy throughout the whole movie.
Anyway, one thing is for sure. This movie is about feeling. Writing a review of this movie is futile because by the time you manipulate the English language enough to try to convey the feeling this movie leaves you with, you're left with something too confusing to decipher.
So just watch this movie, and feel it.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic December 22, 2004
By kabuki
After reading some of these other reviews, I'm just not convinced we're all reviewing the same film. This is a fantastic film. The characters are wonderful, the music is outstanding and the story will have you laughing and crying. It's a touching story of the love between a poor father and son in a class conscious society. The father loves the son and is willing to sacrifice everything in order for his son to become a famous violin player. It's a wholesome film (and no the girl is not a prostitute, she's a night club worker that juggles rich boyfriends) and one that I'm so very glad I didn't miss! It's probably one of the best movies I've seen.
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36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
The film begins with beautiful violin music played by a 13 year old Chinese boy, Xiaochen. In one of the early scenes he plays his violin music to ease the pain of child-birth by a young lady in the next room. Xiaochen's father is a humble cook in a popular local restaurant who is very proud of his son's unique violin playing talent. The father sacrifices his life-savings and security by moving to Beijing to secure violin-lessons to enhance the son's natural talent. The father over-hears two people praising the musical abilities of an eccentric violin teacher during a performance at a music academy. The father is subsumed by his goal to develop the skills of his son, an unpolished violin-playing child prodigy. The teacher-pupil relationship is strong but eventually is strained due to a contest of wills when Xiaochen proves his violin skills are equal (perhaps greater) than those of his teacher. The dad realizes his son requires a more challenging environment and seeks to find a professor with more musical knowledge and vision. There are several themes that are thoroughly explored within this film. The first is ... will Xiaochen eventually understand and appreciate how much his dad has personally sacrificed for his son to succeed? Another theme reveals how two provincial people manage to survive in Beijing, a major hustling and bustling city. The third theme explores whether or not Xiaochen will achieve the discipline required to polish and refine his natural violin playing skills to become a prize-winning performer and bring honor to his father.

When they first arrive in the railroad station at Beijing, the crowds are overwhelming. The dad appears to a country bumpkin who eventually develops street-wise savvy and survival skills in the city. He finds a job as a bicycle-riding courier.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It truly touched my heart! July 11, 2003
The best character portrayed in this movie, in my opinion, is the father. His manners may not be refined or polished, yet his love for his son Xiaochun is so utterly unconditional & unselfish. With minimal education and music training, he however does know a good violinist when he hears one (watch the scene where he wholeheartedly cheers for the already established & famous young violinist's performance after he sneaks in the concert), and that's why he seeks out Prof. Yu for his son. Yeah, he could be manipulative at times, but he is simply behaving like any other ordinary parent who wants the best for his child.
The scene in which the father went to the music shop looking for the old violin just breaks my heart! Anyone who has played the violin long enough knows how attached violinists are to their instruments. It's like the extension to the player's heart; losing it is no less serious than losing part of your soul & memory.
I always regard the violin sound to be the closest, of all the musical instruments, to the expressions and feelings of the human emotions. At the end, perhaps that's what gives Xiaochun the courage to choose what's really important and closest to his heart.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most beautiful films I've ever seen April 17, 2005
This was without a doubt one of the most visually and emotionally beautiful films I've ever seen. The storyline, themes and characters were relevant in any culture. The imagery and filming techniques were superb. The music was well chosen not only to match the emotional tone of each scene, but also to serve as additional metaphors for the main themes of the film (for example, "Consolation" by Liszt.) In fact, the quality of the musical performances would be reason enough to see this film even without the intriguing and moving plot.

I was impressed with the very real and not over-done acting abilities of the major players, which fortunately came through even when watching the film in another language with subtitles, and was critical to carry off this heart-tugging story without seeming sappy.

Best of all, the movie made me cry and laugh and cry some more, and I literally sat on the edge of my seat during the highly emotional and cleverly-filmed climax. I left the theater feeling drained and yet refreshed, and it made me appreciate even more the wonderful opportunities that I've had growing up in this country, and the sacrifices that parents in any land make for their children. I have purchased the film as one I know will give me a lift anytime I watch it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A great movie, very touching!
Published 1 month ago by M. Yang
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very sweet movie -- very enjoyable.
Published 1 month ago by D. Hanson
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this movie
I bought this movie for two reasons. First my son is learning violin and I have been learning with him so I wanted to watch this with him and expose him to beautiful playing. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Joy Glanville
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding
The best movie I've seen in a long time. American movie makers should learn something from it. They make very few movies any more that aren't designed to shock you or overwhelm... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Frank In Cincinnati
4.0 out of 5 stars Characters rather than plot.
I adore world cinema as it concentrates so much more on the characters than on the 20 minute car chases and 20 million dollar effects. Read more
Published 13 months ago by John Gosset
5.0 out of 5 stars surprisingly good, should view it twice
I enjoy foreign films, and this is one of my favorites. (My favorite foreign film is "Ballad of a Soldier", I highly recommend it). Read more
Published 13 months ago by jonathan s damon
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome movie about love between father and son
This is the gripping tale of a young gifted musician, who has to make a choice between his family and his passion. I loved the movie. Chen Kaige really knows how to tell a story. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Djamel Arbouche
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite movies
I already knew about this film so finally wanted to buy it for good. If you speak Chinese you might catch some interesting twists that might otherwise be missed
Published 16 months ago by John W
4.0 out of 5 stars Together
I have seen this movie before I purchased it from Amazon. Now I can watch it with family and friend and know they will enjoy it too.
Published 16 months ago by Daressie Laird
5.0 out of 5 stars Heartbreaking Story
It's a tear-jerking love story a boy has with his violin but moreover between a father and son. Can not go wrong with buying this DVD.
Published 18 months ago by GG
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