Mao's Last Dancer (2010)
"Mao's Last Dancer" is the inspiring true story of Li Cunxin and his extraordinary journey from a poor upbringing in rural China to international stardom as a world-class ballet dancer. Based on the best selling autobiography, the film weaves a moving tale about the quest for freedom and the courage it takes to live your own life. It compellingly captures the struggles, sacrifices and triumphs, as well as the intoxicating effects of first love and celebrity amid the pain of exile.
- PG (for a brief violent image, some sensuality, language and incidental smoking)
- Drama , Musical & Performing Arts , Art House & International
- Directed By:
- Bruce Beresford
- Written By:
- Li Cunxin , Jan Sardi
- In Theaters:
- Aug 20, 2010 Wide
- On DVD:
- May 3, 2011
- Box Office:
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Critic Reviews for Mao's Last Dancer
Bruce Beresford's biopic of Li Cunxin, the Chinese ballet dancer who defected while on a student visa in Houston in 1981, is sometimes the movie equivalent of Oscar Meyer cold cuts. But the dancing is pure caviar.
Feel-good movie about a Chinese dancer presses all the right buttons.
Australian director Bruce Beresford handles the culture-clash aspects of the story with a surprising lack of subtlety.
Lovely and astounding, Mao's Last Dancer is a modern epic of art and ambition triumphing oppression.
Ballet star Li Cunxin's best-selling autobiography gets a curiously tepid treatment in this 2009 adaptation by director Bruce Beresford.
a sweeping story that has many ups and downs, with some pretty noticeable changes in tone and pace
...somehow makes the extraordinary true story it's based on seem like common corn while succeeding in modest ways.
The script is far too melodramatic, and the performances ... are hamfisted and overwrought.
Mao's Last Dancer is such a profoundly moving story, it's hard not to get drawn in as Li must decide how much he's willing to sacrifice for his American dream.
Debuting actor Chi Cao's athleticism is the movie's most striking element.
Ballet is kinda like ice hockey. It's more impressive when you're up close at the real deal. When you're 30 yards away, the snap of a slipper after a 90-lb ballerina lands a glissade is just as impressive as a 290-lb hockey goon hitting the boards.
Mao's Last Dancer is an epic tale of love and betrayal, triumph and heartbreak, that captures the real-life drama and emotion of one man's search for freedom. Well, it almost is.
Whenever Beresford concerns himself with politics or, even worse, personal drama, Dancer falls limply to the ground.
Let the trumpets blare for artistic freedom of expression that is perfectly reflected in this uplifting and moving biopic.
Beresford knows the only way to deal with schmaltz is to just go ahead and embrace it.
Beresford and the entire cast cover the proceedings with a light touch and just the right amount of gravitas (given the situation).
There is some lovely ballet in Mao's Last Dancer. And it's great to see Joan Chen on-screen. And I'm out of nice things to say about the movie.
Audience Reviews for Mao's Last Dancer
Not a repeat movie by any means. Some of the melodrama seemed over the top and out of place with his relationship with the girl.More
This is one of those must see based-on-a-true-story movies, even if you aren't into ballet. Beautiful. Entertaining. Inspiring.More
Oh my god, this is such a bad, melodramatic movie. I wanted to watch this because I thought it was a documentary, but Mao's Last Dancer couldn't be further from that.More
Enjoyed watching it once, but don't think it is one I will be watching again. Acting is kind of bad, but I guess some of these were cast more for their dancing skills, which are excellent. I found it more interesting in modern day than the flashbacks, but it is okay, I guess. It did seem to be a bit dumbed down for an American audience, (not sure if that is a fair comment or not), but I do watch quite a lot of foreign movies, and this to me seemed a bit lacking.More
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