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All Critics (15)
| Top Critics (5)
| Fresh (13)
| Rotten (2)
As savagely satirical as it is gorgeously surreal, "The Great Buddha+" is something else again - an outrageous, poignant punk Taiwanese black comedy marking the feature arrival of fresh filmmaking talent Huang Hsin-Yao.
Which may sound good, but 'The Great Buddha+' is one of those movies that's much more rewarding to think about than it is to watch.
Most importantly, the pic gets laughs out of the class system without being glib about its cruelties. The gulf between rich and poor clearly matters to Huang, who poignantly shows how poverty robs even the dead of dignity.
The good cheer goes a long way in countering the knee-jerk cynicism, which grows tiresome well before the end.
This ballad of sad losers mixed with satire on parochial politics is convulsively funny yet uncompromisingly bleak, bridging art with entertainment.
It's not often that political and social satire can sleep together in the same cinematic bed, but Huang has found the magic jelly to make his many points convincingly.
...an odd, philosophical smorgasbord of scathing themes that colorfully decorate this off-kilter social critique of underclass religion and repression...an ambitious, imaginative, and bitingly humorous cultural concoction of meager existences in Taiwan
Taiwan's candidate for the U.S. Academy Awards finds comedy amid its serious concern with inequality of income.
The Great Buddha+ doesn't deliver a satisfying conclusion, which makes the whole film slightly exhausting to watch.
This compassion allows for a more in-depth connection to the interiority of characters... and elevates the story into a kind of folklore or moral tale.
The scathing social critique of The Great Buddha + is comparable to that of Marco Ferreri's Spanish black comedies... in which an underclass' universe is portrayed with vitriolic humor mixed with tenderness. [Full review in Spanish]
With The Great Buddha +, Huang Hsin-yao makes a brilliant first impression on the international film scene.
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