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Shanghai Triad
  • Alternative view 1 of Shanghai Triad
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Shanghai Triad

4.0 4
Director: Zhang Yimou

Cast: Gong Li, Li Baotian, Li Xuejian

 
Zhang Yimou's gangster film Shanghai Triad comes to DVD with a widescreen anamorphic transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. The Mandarin soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo. English and Spanish subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include trailers, and production notes. This is a good release from Columbia

Overview

Zhang Yimou's gangster film Shanghai Triad comes to DVD with a widescreen anamorphic transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. The Mandarin soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo. English and Spanish subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include trailers, and production notes. This is a good release from Columbia/TriStar that boasts excellent picture quality.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Zhang Yimou's final film with actress Gong Li is a lushly photographed evocation of the wide-open Shanghai of the 1930s, but remains gauzily incoherent. Narrated by a rustic 14-year old boy (Wang Xiao Xiao) who has been hired as a servant for the beautiful, vixenish chanteuse/gangster's moll played by Li, the film follows her glittering underworld life as she comes to realize the limits of her freedom. Unfortunately, neither her story nor the film's other thread about the gang wars of the time are very clear since we see everything from the boy's rather fragmentary perspective. Yimou seems to intend Li's seeming embrace of a more rural life at the film's conclusion as a kind of spiritual reawakening, but after knowing the cruelty of which she's capable, this sudden transformation is less than persuasive. As usual, Zhang Yimou's gorgeous camerawork has made this seedy milieu more hypnotically beautiful that it ever could have been, and the presence of the stunning Li doesn't hurt.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/12/2000
UPC:
0043396118577
Original Release:
1995
Rating:
R
Source:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital]
Time:
1:47:00

Special Features

Digitally mastered audio and anamorphic video; Widescreen presentation; Original language: Chinese [Mandarin]; Subtitles: English, Spanish; Theatrical trailers; Talent files; Interactive menus; Production notes; Scene selections

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Scene Selections
0. Scene Selections
1. Start. [3:14]
2. First Day. [5:44]
3. The Boss's Club. [1:30]
4. The Queen of Shanghai. [2:35]
5. Xiao's Dressing Room. [15:00]
6. Bumpkin at her Door. [2:01]
7. Xiao's House. [2:48]
8. Tryst. [3:33]
9. Second Day. [4:18]
10. A Song for Mr. Yu. [2:37]
11. Tantrum. [2:22]
12. Third Day. [3:40]
13. Massacre. [4:13]
14. Fourth Day. [5:49]
15. Fifth Day. [1:03]
16. Ajiao. [4:36]
17. Uninvited Guest. [2:38]
18. Sixth Day. [4:31]
19. Two Bumpkins. [3:53]
20. A Chat with Cuihua. [6:29]
21. Seventh Day. [1:40]
22. Visitors. [1:41]
23. Overheard. [1:57]
24. Warning. [2:17]
25. The Boss Explains. [3:44]
26. Promises. [3:37]
27. Setting the Score. [2:39]
28. Last Wish. [7:14]

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Shanghai Triad 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Shanghai Triad" tells the story of seven days during the 1930s in the murderous underworld of China's principle city, a week which begins in the most ordinary way-a young kid from the country, the third nephew of a cousin of the mob boss, is introduced as the new servant to the boss's mistress. It ends after a series of increasingly brutal acts of betrayal and casual cruelty. Liu Yau, the Triad leader, is the personification of evil, a person who kills without remorse and who is always looking for the next victim to corrupt and the movie centers around a plot against him by rival gangs and his response to it. We see the action unfold partially through the astonished and always watchful eyes of the new servant from the countryside, Shui Sheng--he is one of the few even slightly sympathetic characters we encounter. Shui Sheng is a Tang as is Liu Yau, a family connection that allows him to enter the otherwise close world of gangsters on the lowest possibly level as most junior servant to Siu Gam Bo or Bijou, the cabaret singer who is Liu Yau's mistress. The gang boss is masterfully underplayed by Lee Biu-Tin whose expression barely changes but who is able to show the power and energy beneath the boss's almost placid exterior. Gong Li plays his mistress-her part is overwritten and seems, until the very end of the movie, needlessly melodramatic-but she rises to the occasion with an enthralling performance. Her song and dance numbers in the nightclub are choreographed and scored to perfection so that one forgets that she is an actress not known for her singing or dancing-she comes across as veteran honky-tonk diva. All comparisons are invidious (which is why they are so much fun) and Gong Li as Bijou makes Catherine Zeta-Jones as Velma Kelly look like a rank amateur. We don't discover the true depth of Liu's loathsomeness or the source of Bijou's endless malevolence until the last few seconds of the film, a scene which I cannot describe without spoiling the story for those who haven't yet seen it but it is a jaw-dropping revelation that shocks even after scenes of torture and murder. Unfortunately Tri-Star has done a disservice to this film with its almost pastelized transfer-it was only be cranking up the contrast and changing some of the color values while watching this on a computer screen that I was able to get a sense (albeit and incomplete one) of the color and depth of field that Zhang used.
Guest More than 1 year ago
ANY FAN OF CHINESE CINEMA WOULD RECOGNIZE THE CHARACTER ACTORS IN THE FILM. THIS IS AN EXCEPTIONAL FILM, WHICH IS THE MAINLAND CHINA'S "THE COTTON CLUB." THERE ARE GREAT MONTAGES OF GONG LI SINGING AND THE FILM MAINTAINS ITS FLOW. THE FILM GETS A LITTLE DOWNBEAT IN THE THIRD ACT, BUT THE TWIST IN PLOT IS LIKABLE TO ANY COPPOLA FAN.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This film is sort of like a Shanghai Godfather/Goodfellas ... Gong Li is awesome to look at and to watch
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is a great portrayal of Chinese gangland intrigue in Shanghi in the 1920's. There is beautiful cinematography and a treacherous plot. Not Gong Li's best movie ( Farewell my concubine), but she does do an excellent job here.