Skip to main content

LI SHUANG-SHUANG

China, 1962 (MIFF 1965)

Director: Lu Jen

Li Shuang-Shuang is perhaps the most outstanding film yet made about life in the Chinese countryside. Through the clashes between an ordinary peasant and his wife, in a people's commune, it reflects the conflict between the old and the new. Although different in temperament, Shuang-Shuang and her husband love each other, and the tussle between them is played out as a comedy.

The old moral concept, and the new, are expressed mainly through the attitude to collective work. Shuang-Shuang is a typical north-Chinese peasant woman, outspoken and frank. After the establishment of the commune in 1958, she stars to work like ihe men, identifying herself with the collective.

Her husband's contrasting character is well depicted: he is a kindhearted, hardworking young man who has inherited a set of rules which includes the belief that a woman's place is at home. But the new way of life changes the peasants' outlook, in feet, the whole countryside is changing, and along with it moral standards and human relationships. The title role is played by Chang Jui-fang, one of China's best known actresses, and her husband is excellently portrayed hy Chung Hsing-huo, an estab­lished actor in humorous roles.

See also...

Landscape Painting

Beginning with shots of the old master, Pan Tienshou, at work, the film presents some of the chief features of Chinese landscape painting. ... More »

The Spirit of Genseng

A children's film using paper cut-outs. The story is aboul the trials and tribulations of an orphan boy who is finally saved from his tormentor by the Spirit of Genseng. ... More »

OLD FISH

“I don't think I've ever seen more tension-filled sequences of this sort.” - critic and historian David Bordwell ... Affectionately called ‘Old Fish' by the locals, a cop approaching retirement ... More »

THE BIG PARADE

One of the most startling things about The Big Parade is how little its formal and visual qualities resemble Chen's internationally acclaimed debut feature, Yellow Earth. But perhaps the most salient ... More »

THE PIANO IN A FACTORY

"Simple in its measured and assured direction, The Piano in a Factory establishes Zhang Meng as one of the most vibrant voices in Chinese cinema today." - Toronto International Film Festival ... More »

BEIJING BESIEGED BY WASTE

A vision of a city environmentally at the end of its tether. ... When photographer Wang Jiuliang began looking into waste disposal in China's capital, he had no idea of the scale of the city's ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director