Scent Of Green Papaya

( 2 )

Overview

The interior life of a Vietnamese household in the 1950s, as seen through the eyes of a young servant girl, is explored in Tran Anh Hung's placid, but visually intoxicating tone poem, L'Odeur de la Papaye Verte. The film begins in 1951, when the beautiful and inquisitive 10-year-old peasant girl Mui (Lu Man San) is hired to work at the home of an affluent Saigon family. When the father absconds with the family's money, the tireless mother (Truong Thi Loc) is forced to support the family through the slim profits ...
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Overview

The interior life of a Vietnamese household in the 1950s, as seen through the eyes of a young servant girl, is explored in Tran Anh Hung's placid, but visually intoxicating tone poem, L'Odeur de la Papaye Verte. The film begins in 1951, when the beautiful and inquisitive 10-year-old peasant girl Mui (Lu Man San) is hired to work at the home of an affluent Saigon family. When the father absconds with the family's money, the tireless mother (Truong Thi Loc) is forced to support the family through the slim profits of her tiny fabric store. As the family struggles to make ends meet, Mui becomes attracted to a friend of the family, Khuyen (Vuong Hoa Hoi). The film then shifts to 1961, when the family is in desperate straits. The father has died, and Mui (Tran Nu Yen-Khe), now twenty years old, finds herself working in Khuyen's home. Khuyun has grown into an attractive, sophisticated French-speaking pianist, with his own expensive mistress. Mui serves him as she has served the family -- with perfection and silence. She also loves Khuyen is silence, and gradually Khuyen begins to take notice of Mui's love for him.
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Special Features

Behind-the-scenes featurette ; Theatrical trailer; Stills gallery
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Todd Kristel
This is not a movie that you watch for action-packed scenes, scenery-chewing performances, witty dialogue, or convoluted plot twists. Instead, this is a slow-paced film that emphasizes the rhythms, textures, and quiet beauty of daily life. The film is based primarily on appreciating small moments such as juice flowing from a papaya or a lizard climbing out of a vase; the camera lingers to savor these images, then moves deeper into the frame to find further levels of visual detail, just as a child might slowly explore the surrounding world. Meanwhile, the soundtrack reinforces the serene mood through music, which is performed on traditional Vietnamese instruments and piano, and natural sounds such as crickets and rain. The issues raised by the film, such as the effect of French colonialism on Vietnamese culture, are addressed in a relatively understated manner (with a few exceptions, such as the symbolism of a scene in which someone drips hot wax onto a group of worker ants). The Scent of Green Papaya seems to express a yearning for a simpler time when people, particularly women, accepted traditional social roles; some viewers may be put off by this apparent attitude, particularly since the film doesn't compensate for it with in-depth characterization. Also, some viewers are likely to find the film dull because of the languid pace and minimal plot. However, the movie is gorgeous enough to merit viewing if you're in a patient mood and willing to tolerate the film's limitations.
Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert
The Scent of Green Papaya...is first of all a film of great visual beauty; watching it is like seeing a poem for the eyes...what is astonishing is that this entire film was made in Paris, on a sound stage...so convincing that at first we think we are occupying a small, secluded corner of a real city.... It is a placid, interior, contemplative film - not plot-driven, but centered on the growth of the young woman. As such, you might think it would seem "slower" on later viewings, but I found that the opposite was true.... This is a film to cherish.
San Francisco Chronicle
The Scent of Green Papaya is a lovely experience in the dreamily exotic.... His sets capture the exotic textures of the exquisite architectural beauty of the period...Peter Stack

The Scent of Green Papaya is a lovely experience in the dreamily exotic.... His sets capture the exotic textures of the exquisite architectural beauty of the period...Peter Stack
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/26/2011
  • UPC: 738329074326
  • Original Release: 1993
  • Source: Lorber Films (Kino)
  • Presentation: Subtitled
  • Time: 1:44:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 16,190

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Tran Nu Yên-Khê Mùi
Lu Man San Mùi
Truong Thi Loc The mother
Nguyen Anh Hoa Old Thi
Vuong Hoa Hoi Khuyen
Tran Ngoc Trung The father
Technical Credits
Tran Anh Hung Director, Screenwriter
Jean-Philippe Abril Costumes/Costume Designer
Nicole Dedieu Editor
Benoit Delhomme Cinematographer
Alain Negre Production Designer
Patricia Petit Screenwriter
Jean-Pierre Roques Editor
Christophe Rossignon Producer
Jean-Pierre Ruques Editor
Ton That Tiet Score Composer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Scent of Green Papaya
1. Arrival [:07]
2. First Day [7:45]
3. Brothers [8:44]
4. Master's Departure [8:14]
5. Salty [11:16]
6. Unhappy [8:07]
7. Watched From Afar [9:10]
8. 10 Years Later [9:21]
9. New Servant [8:57]
10. Lipstick [9:37]
11. Split [8:10]
12. "To Stir Harmoniously" [6:32]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- The Scent of Green Papaya
   Play Film
   Chapters
   Extras
      Behind-the-Scenes Featurette
      Theatrical Trailer
      Stills
   Subtitles
      Subtitles: On
      Subtitles: Off
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Touching Film

    THE SCENT OF GREEN PAPAYA was one of the most touching films I have ever seen. The actresses who play young and older Mui are both extremely beautiful and talented. This movie was both a drama and a feel-good film.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A great Movie

    Even if you don't speak this language you shoild still watch this movie, I don't know why subtitles would turn everyone off, this movie had wonderful value to it.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews