Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

by Tan Dun
     
 

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Though it was made in Taiwan, set in China, and written in Mandarin, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is something of a cultural hybrid. The film was the brainchild of a Taiwanese director (Ang Lee) with an impressive Hollywood résumé that includes Sense and Sensibility and The Ice Storm. The screenplay was adapted from a Chinese novel by two AsiansSee more details below

Overview

Though it was made in Taiwan, set in China, and written in Mandarin, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is something of a cultural hybrid. The film was the brainchild of a Taiwanese director (Ang Lee) with an impressive Hollywood résumé that includes Sense and Sensibility and The Ice Storm. The screenplay was adapted from a Chinese novel by two Asians and an American and it featured international movie star Chow Yun Fat. Stylistically, the movie drew as much from Hollywood romantic epics as it did from Chinese martial arts dramas. The challenge for the film's composer, Tan Dun, was to score the film with music that would represent its multicultural origins and multifaceted influences. His solution was to blend sweeping Western orchestral music with traditional Chinese instruments like rawap, tar drums, and Chinese erhu while using another internationally renowned Asian, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, as a sort of bridge between the two styles. Dun's strategy works beautifully in the film, striking perfectly the delicate balance between the exotic and the familiar -- exactly what is required by a script that paints a romanticized fantasy version of ancient China grounded in universal emotional experience. The romantic themes ("The Eternal Vow," "Farewell") are stirring without being manipulative and memorable without being repetitive. Even more impressive are the musical pieces for the film's graceful combat scenes. Unlike most American action films, Crouching Tiger does not swamp the audience in discordant suspense music. And though the warriors do fly across their battlefields like stones skipping lightly across a pond, Dun does not attempt an E.T.-like soaring score. Instead, the action scenes are accompanied by vibrant Chinese rhythms, mercifully abandoning melody altogether. The only false moment on the soundtrack is the grating end credit pop ballad "A Love Before Time," which is performed by Asian-American singer CoCo Lee. The song is a transparent attempt to mimic Celine Dion's megahit closer for Titanic, "My Heart Will Go On," and it is an infuriatingly commercial conclusion to a gloriously original film.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/02/2010
Label:
Sony Classics
UPC:
0886976085926
catalogNumber:
760859
Rank:
43735

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Tan Dun   Primary Artist,Conductor
Yo-Yo Ma   Cello
Jorge Calandrelli   Conductor,Keyboards
Julio Hernandez   Electric Bass
Wendy Pedersen   Background Vocals
Archie Pena   Percussion
Dan Warner   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Tommy Anthony   Background Vocals
CoCo Lee   Vocals
David Cossin   Percussion
Yuanlin Chen   Sampling
Tang Jun Qiao   Bawu,Dizi
Shanghai Symphony Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Shanghai Percussion Ensemble   Percussion Ensemble
Ma Xiaohui   Erhu
Chen Xieyang   Conductor
Shanghai National Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Alimjan   Rawap
Kasim   Hand Drums
Wen-De Hsieh   Background Vocals
Paula Ma   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Jorge Calandrelli   Arranger,Composer,Programming,Producer
Richard King   Engineer
Dave Reitzas   Engineer
Lisa Sparagano   Art Direction
Javier Garza   Engineer
Ken Fredette   Art Direction
Tan Dun   Composer,Producer
Alfred Figueroa   Engineer
Jason Morey   Management
Laraine Perri   Executive Producer
Xu Gou Qin   Engineer
James Schamus   Lyricist
Lu Xiaoxing   Engineer
Steven Epstein   Producer
Freddy Piñero   Engineer
Paula Ma   Vocal Producer
Kuo-Tai Chung   Engineer

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