– Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles 2005
– Qian li zou dan qi (original title)
– 1h 47 min. | Drama | 22 December 2005 (China)
In a village of fishermen in Japan, Takata misses his son Kenichi, to whom he has been estranged for many years. When his daughter-in-law Rie tells him that Kenichi is sick in the hospital, she suggests Takata to come to Tokyo to visit his son in the hospital where he would have the chance to retie the relationship. However, Kenichi refuses to receive his father in his room, and Rie gives a videotape to Takata to know about the work of his son. Once at home, Takata sees a documentary in the remote village Lijiang, in the province of Yunnan, about the passion of Kenichi, the Chinese opera, where the lead singer Li Jiamin promises to sing an important folk opera on the next year. When Rie calls Takata to tell that her husband has a terminal liver cancer, Takata decides to travel to Lijiang to shoot Li Jiamin singing the opera to give to Kenichi.
Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)
Rated PG for mild thematic elements.
Zhang Yimou’s last two martial arts films had much to commend them, but, honestly, I’d trade ten such films for this. It was almost too much to hope for that the director would return to his earlier, humanist style of filmmaking that saw “The Road Home,” “Not One Less” and “Happy Times” – but he has, and wonderfully so.
Ken Takakura, who has appeared in fine films such as “Poppoya” and “The Yellow Handkerchief,” really shines here. It’s his film all the way, and a wonderful tribute that Zhang chose to craft this film for him.
While the core of the film lies with the emotions of the characters, I should also point out that the cinematography here is splendid – there are shots that are as breathtaking as anything in “Hero” and “House of Flying Daggers.”
Director: Yimou Zhang
Writers: Yimou Zhang (story), Jingzhi Zou (story), Bin Wang (story)
Stars: Ken Takakura, Kiichi Nakai (voice), Shinobu Terajima
Countries of origin: China, Japan, Hong Kong
Languages: Mandarin, Japanese
Also known as: Riding Alone
Filming locations: Lijiang, Yunnan, China.
Format : Matroska
Format version : Version 2
File size : 1.25 GiB
Duration : 1 h 48 min
Overall bit rate : 1 650 kb/s