Goodbye, Dragon Inn [Blu-ray] [2020]

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Goodbye, Dragon Inn [Blu-ray] [2020]

Goodbye, Dragon Inn [Blu-ray] [2020]

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This is where the lingering shot at the end of Goodbye, Dragon Inn of the empty auditorium really hit home, acting as it did as a reminder that sometimes you really don’t fully appreciate what you’ve got until it’s gone. Interestingly, it’s also nigh-on impossible to watch the sequence in which the woman starts uncontrollably coughing in this busy bus terminal in the current climate without seeing it as an albeit unintended trigger moment for a story about how easily Covid-19 can spread in a public place from a single carrier. Why, I wondered on occasion, is this image being held on for this length, past when it has not only done its job but underscored it multiple times? I’ve genuinely lost count of the number of times I’ve fought to tolerate such a disturbance, and when my disapproving glares failed to have even the smallest impact I would often move seats to avoid a potentially unpleasant confrontation. In the only fast cut sequence in the film, the cashier is momentarily mesmerised by the fighting skills of the on-screen movie’s female action star Shangguan Lingfeng, the rapid back-and-forth cutting between the two hinting at the cashier’s dreams for life that fate has denied her.

Here the decision to hold on a static shot of the tourist and the snack eaters serves a dual purpose, not only capturing the essence of a situation that few serious cinemagoers have not found themselves in a number of times, but also by gracing the situation with an unexpected layer of humour. Instead she places it quietly in the entrance to the projection booth for him to hopefully find and gratefully consume, then slowly makes her way back to ground level. This gives rise to an amusingly peculiar moment when the tourist, after repeatedly glancing at a middle-aged man a couple of rows down, moves and sits next to him, then turns to curiously scrutinise his face, an oddly rude inspection that the man elects to ignore until the tourist gives up and departs. MetrographPics will be releasing the new 4K restoration of GOODBYE, DRAGON INN digitally starting 12/18.

In this wide-ranging and elegiac essay, Nick Pinkerton reflects upon Tsai Ming-liang’s 2003 film Goodbye, Dragon Inn, a modern classic haunted by the ghosts and portents of a culture in flux. A meager audience, the remaining few staff, and perhaps even a ghost or two, watch King Hu’s wuxia classic Dragon Inn—each haunted by memories and desires evoked by cinema itself. Given my initial uncertainty, I was surprised how involved I became in it and ultimately how much I gleaned from what is only suggested by what occurs on screen, and was certainly caught out by its poetic evocation of childhood memories, its moments of almost absurdist humour and its touching final moments. Scott of The New York Times praised the film, writing, " Goodbye, Dragon Inn has a quiet, cumulative magic, whose source is hard to identify.

On November 6, 2020, Weerasethakul tweeted, "THE best film of the last 125 years: Goodbye, Dragon Inn. This moving, deliberately slow paean to the faded splendor of old movie-palaces captures so much of what we love (and love to hate! Goodbye, Dragon Inn ( Chinese: 不散) is a 2003 Taiwanese comedy-drama slow cinema film written and directed by Tsai Ming-liang about a movie theater about to close down and its final screening of the 1967 wuxia film Dragon Inn. As movie houses close and corporations dominate, the art form is at risk of changing beyond recognition. Central to this approach is a young male Japanese tourist (Kiyonobu Mitamura) whose actions and observations weave a connecting tread to some of the other patrons at this poorly attended swansong screening.And when I do connect with such a film on any level, I know it’s going to be a tough sell to what a sizeable portion of even our readership. By the time he elects to move seats it occurred to me that I’d been watching this unfold in a single shot in real time, and that this was why it felt so familiar to me. I do, you see, get where those who dislike the film are coming from, and even I at times found myself quietly muttering “cut” during some of the longer held static shots.

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