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Empire of Silver (2011)

tomatometer

71

Average Rating: 5.8/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 2

No consensus yet.

audience

53

liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 317

My Rating

Movie Info

China, 1899. In a land of exquisite beauty and timeless tradition a hedonistic young man known as 'Third Master' is the heir to a banking empire he cares little about. However, after his brother's wife is kidnapped he reluctantly submits to the pressure of his title as well as his overbearing father, Lord Kang. Lord Kang is determined to prepare his son for financial leadership by molding Third Master into his own image. The ruthless businessman's unethical practices do not sit well with Third

Unrated,

Art House & International, Drama

Christina Yao, Cheng Yi

$40.1k

NeoClassics Films - Official Site External Icon

Cast

Latest News on Empire of Silver

June 2, 2011:
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All Critics (15) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (8) | Rotten (7)

What, if anything, the film's final burst of idealism offers universally is hard to say. But it feels good to see in these acrimonious days.

December 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Though written too broadly to serve as the powerful allegorical tale writer/director Christina Yao intends, this historical epic is just compelling enough to be taken on its own terms.

June 3, 2011 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Occasionally muddled and always melodramatic, yet it's pictorially compelling, thanks to dramatic locations and exacting art direction.

June 3, 2011 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Makes for unwieldy melodrama, rather than the enthralling epic it might have been.

June 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[A] weirdly engaging tale of banking and bad behavior...

June 2, 2011 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Epic in sweep and scale and packs in enough incident to cover two "Godfather" movies.

June 2, 2011 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Unwieldy Chinese melodrama shows money can't buy love.

May 24, 2012 Full Review Source: sbs.com.au
sbs.com.au

The complicated romance that punctuates the story adds spice (and a twist), but it's a film essentially about the banking family and their machinations at a time of rapid change in China

May 11, 2012 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

High production values, gorgeous sets and costumes, excellent lighting and cinematography, plus the spirited playing of Aaron Kwok as the Third Master.

June 17, 2011 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

Handsome Chinese costume actioner mixing power struggles, financial crises and romance a century ago may impress American audiences, but story overkill and subtleties of Chinese culture and history confound.

June 3, 2011 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

A beautiful but stolid, screamingly boring period piece with acting so wooden as to invite unfavorable comparison to a collection of popsicle sticks.

June 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Shockya.com
Shockya.com

Handsomely mounted and packed with interesting historical details, Empire of Silver unfortunately falls short on providing emotionally rich drama

June 2, 2011 Full Review Source: NYC Film Critic
NYC Film Critic

A dazzlingly visual film, one marked by a thoughtful approach to a tale of business and interpersonal intrigue.

May 31, 2011 Full Review Source: Hollywood & Fine
Hollywood & Fine

Stateliness begets inertia in Empire of Silver, a turn-of-the-century Chinese epic whose reserved tone and regal atmosphere is suffocating.

May 29, 2011 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

Audience Reviews for Empire of Silver

Too episodic, which makes it hard to follow the story. Too many times I had no idea what was going on. Too much material to cram into just one movie. With so many characters, it's often hard to tell them apart. Great potential, but falls short. Not terrible, just not great.
March 31, 2014
itsjustme2004

Super Reviewer

Impressive visuals and great production design are unfortunately overshadowed by a convoluted plot that struggles to depict its story - a narrative that starts strong but deteriorates as it attempts to balance too many emotional stakes for its own good while including one (or two) too many scenes that unintentionally call attention to itself. This debut feature, however, shows promise for writer/director Christina Yao as it consists of stunning locations and sweeping camera moves and proves that she is not afraid to touch upon tough subject matters that are rather difficult to film.
April 21, 2011
Sheldon Chau

Super Reviewer

    1. Third Master: Those who win hearts rule the world.
    – Submitted by Frances H (2 months ago)
    1. Third Master: If he wants me to care for myself, he shouldn't mold me in his image.
    – Submitted by Frances H (2 months ago)
    1. Madame Kang: If I perish in fire, my heart will be the ashes on your clothes.
    – Submitted by Frances H (2 months ago)
View all quotes (3)

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  • Empire of Silver (Baiyin diguo) (DE)
  • Empire of Silver (Baiyin diguo) (UK)
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