Bordwell explains what the heck the title means (dragons denote hot, rebellious youth, characterizing the lovers Jen and Lo, and the repressed passion smoldering within the older, thwarted lovers, Yu Shu Lien and Li Mu Bai), the film's place in Chinese cinema history (wuxia martial-arts films are a titanic tradition rooted in folk tales), and all manner of intriguing arcana briskly noted in a lively style. Lee tells how the film squares with his other works like Sense and Sensibility: "In a family drama, there is a verbal fight. Here, you kick butt." Though one does wish it were longer, this thoughtful, beautifully laid-out book moves the spirit--plus, it kicks butt. --Tim Appelo
From School Library Journal
Adult/High School-The heart of the book is the complete screenplay, in English, illustrated with stills from the film. The script is a valuable resource for anyone too dazzled by the images to keep up with the subtitles. In addition, there is a foreword by Ang Lee; an essay analyzing the film by Time magazine film critic Richard Corliss; an essay about wuxia pian, Chinese martial-art films; and numerous short pieces examining aspects of the film, such as weapons, working with fight choreographer Yuen Wo Ping, and the meaning of the title. There are ample quotes from the director and the stars, which provide personal perspectives on the movie. The book is rounded out by short biographies of the major production staff and complete credits. Crouching Tiger is a visual feast, a sumptuously designed book with gorgeous photos, rich color, and varied motifs. It is sure to appeal to fans of the film.
Susan Salpini, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA
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