Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled) (2008) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled) (2008)

Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled) Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Inevitably recalling director Chen Kaige's 1993 masterpiece, the international smash Farewell, My Concubine, the sumptuous period epic Forever Enthralled (originally and more elegantly given the eponymous biographical title Mei Lanfang) dramatizes the life of Lanfang (Leon Lai), widely regarded as one of the most legendary opera performers in all of Chinese history. Though a male, Lanfang built his reputation on the basis of outstanding performances as female characters, and in fact, lived out his private life buckling under the weight of repressed emotions. Kaige structurally divides the epic into segments. The film commences with a 70-minute sequence that depicts Mei's reaction to a letter from his uncle, cautioning him against the dangers of an operatic career; in the years that follow, Mei recoils from social rules (wrought by his chosen profession) that severely restrict his actions. The narrative then moves forward in time by a decade, to a point where Mei has somehow managed to bound over the said limitations and establish himself as the single most popular opera star in all of China. Conflict lingers, however -- present in Mei's repeated on-stage duels with the performer Swallow 13 (an apocryphal character who represents a composite of several real-life figures), whose style is the polar opposite of his own. Kaige then moves ahead in time to explore Mei's efforts to juggle a second marriage to Fu Zhifang (Chen Hong) and his relationship with his manager, Oju Rubai (Sun Honglei), whose passion for Mei's on-stage craft (and, possibly, a desire for Mei himself) know no bounds. Sadly, a pitfall to Mei's familial security soon presents itself in the form of a young female admirer, Meng Xiaodong (Zhang Ziyi) with whom he lapses into a love affair. ~ Nathan Southern, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Documentary, Drama, Art House & International, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Kaige Chen, Yan Geling, Chen Kuo-fu, Zhang Jialu
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jul 14, 2009


Leon Lai
as Mei Lanfang
Ziyi Zhang
as Meng Xiaodong
Honglei Sun
as Qiu Rubai
Hong Chen
as Fu Zhifang
Wang Xueqi
as Swallow 13
Da Ying
as Feng Ziguang
Shaoqun Yu
as Mei Lanfang (younger...
Shengsu Li
as Yan Huizhu
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled)

Critic Reviews for Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled)

There are no critic reviews yet for Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled). Keep checking Rotten Tomatoes for updates!

Audience Reviews for Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled)

There are no featured audience reviews yet. Click the link below to see what others say about Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled)!

Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled) Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Mei Lanfang (Forever Enthralled) on our Movie forum!