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Happy Times
     

Happy Times

Director: Zhang Yimou, Zhao Benshan, Dong Jie, Li Xuejian

Cast: Zhang Yimou, Zhao Benshan, Dong Jie, Li Xuejian

 
Zhang Yimou's Happy Times comes to DVD with a widescreen anamorphic transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of the film. The Mandarin soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo. English and French subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include trailers. This is a solid release from Columbia/TriStar that should be worthwhile

Overview

Zhang Yimou's Happy Times comes to DVD with a widescreen anamorphic transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of the film. The Mandarin soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo. English and French subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include trailers. This is a solid release from Columbia/TriStar that should be worthwhile for anyone with an interest in Asian cinema.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Andrea LeVasseur
Known for his intense period pieces, director Zhang Yimou takes a turn toward modern-day China in the touching comedy drama Happy Times. Shot around the port city of Dalian, Yimou uses hidden cameras to capture some of the natural bustling street life in some of the wide outdoor scenes. Moving rapidly into advanced consumer capitalism, the city is a very lively and conflicting backdrop for the old-fashioned DIY ethics of lovable protagonist Zhao (Zhao Benshan). With his graying hair and pot belly, Zhao attempts to hide his sincerity with a manic speaking style and package of lies. However, his honest sense of human decency shines through the surface-level deception. Some of the comedy might not work for Western audiences who have clearly lost something in the translation, but the inspiring final reel makes up for whatever jokes could have preceded it. A true Yimou heroine, the graceful Dong Jie makes an impressive acting debut as Wu Ying, whose fragile nature is strengthened by the film's conclusion. Although it's not nearly as ambitious as his other work, Happy Times is a laid-back comedy with a creative plot and plenty of character quirks. The haphazard urban imagery is valuable, but it's the humanity at the center that's likely to have a lasting effect.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/03/2002
UPC:
0043396079045
Original Release:
2001
Rating:
PG
Source:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
1:42:00

Special Features

Digitally mastered audio & anamorphic video; Widescreen presentation; Audio: Chinese (Mandarin) 5.1 (Dolby Digital); Subtitles: English, French; Bonus trailers; Scene selections

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start [1:14]
2. The Wedding Planners [1:17]
3. Fu [1:37]
4. The Happy Times Hut Plan [2:25]
5. First Customers [4:52]
6. 100 Yuan Trip [3:27]
7. Uncle Zhao [2:34]
8. Wu Ying [4:01]
9. "Can You Find Her a Job?" [7:34]
10. The Employment Application [3:25]
11. Beautifying the Area [3:34]
12. Dispossessed [5:16]
13. The Employee Apartment [3:07]
14. Building a Massage Parlor [5:16]
15. Ambiance [1:25]
16. The Grand Tour [3:57]
17. Professor Li's Massage [3:59]
18. A Popsicle on Beida Street [3:40]
19. A New Dress [2:50]
20. Sounds of Silence [2:16]
21. 2000 Yuan Monthly Overhead [1:23]
22. "I Want to Quit." [4:59]
23. Auntie Liu's Idea [6:11]
24. Celebratory Dinner [4:56]
25. Broken Engagement [6:02]
26. The Accident [3:05]
27. PLEASE LISTEN TO THE TAPE [3:32]
28. Zhao's Letter [4:29]

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