Woman Demon Human

Woman Demon Human

(Ren gui qing)
(1987)

Award-winning Chinese biopic of opera actress Pei Yanling who made a name for herself playing martial male roles.... More

"Huang Shuqin’s powerfully unorthodox drama Woman Demon Human is part biopic, part stage fantasy, part psychological mystery. It is based on the life of the female Beijing opera star Pei Yanling who was famous for portraying male roles on stage, especially the ghost-catching underworld god Zhong Kui. In the film version, Pei is called Qiu Yun, a young girl whose parents are Beijing opera performers. Qiu catches her mother making love with another actor, after which the mother abandons the family. Qiu then powerfully identifies with her father and consequently determines to inhabit a male stage persona. The film gives elliptical fragments of her career, from brutal training regimens, through dangerous flirtations, incipient fame and national renown." (International Film Festival of Rotterdam)Hide

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