Mao's Last Dancer Movie Review: An AMWF Romance Date Movie

Mao’s Last Dancer Movie Review (An AMWF Romance Date Movie)



White Asian Guys

Allow me to begin this movie review of “Mao’s Last Dancer” by stating that neither ballet nor opera are my bag. I've a mature brother that loves classical music and the opera, but the artistic and musical gene completely passed me by.



However, having said that, even when you’re as tone deaf or artistically ignorant as I am, doesn’t mean that you won’t benefit from the movie “Mao’s Last Dancer.” The ballet dancing and cinematography are first class enough that a neophyte like myself can appreciate it’s technical execution.



But that’s the least from the matter.



This is the heartwarming true life story of Li Cunxin, a boy plucked from abject poverty in the peasant rice fields of Communist China to become a national ballet sensation, based off of the best selling autobiography “Mao’s Last Dancer.”



Told in intermittent flashbacks, you feel grounded and committed to these real life characters. These flashbacks do a really great job at painting the poignancy of his family and also the strength of their familial bond. For instance, the mother’s love for her son is exemplified when she spends the entire night to stitch his blanket, pressing on despite the sunshine bulb has burned out, before sending him off and away to the big city.



On a personal level, I could really relate to how much my own family and especially mother sacrificed for me personally to ensure that me to be successful.



 “A mother is a person who seeing you will find only four bits of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did take care of pie.” - Tenneva Jordan



There’s obviously an element of “White Man Saving the Day” Syndrome, but it is with different true story. For instance, it had been noticed that most of Li’s fellow students came off as robotic and emotionless, even though they had perfect technique and tone of muscle except for Li. And also the Communists are obviously unhealthy guys within this story which grossly simplifies the political context of this day and age, however, this is based on Li Cunxin’s real life story.



Now Chi Cao as Li Cunxin is great because the innocent, naive, and earnest foreigner. He doesn’t speak a lot (he mostly plays earnest and endearing immigrant), but he definitely carried the film well.



Actress Amanda Schull plays cute like a button Elizabeth and Li Cunxin’s first girlfriend who is absolutely adorable and jogs my memory of my own college sweetheart. The first date scene of teaching a girl all about Asian food and chopsticks is certainly something I can connect with. It’s rare to see a positive AMWF love story making mtss is a good “first date” type movie to look at having a girl.



Bruce Greenwood‘s (as Ben Stephenson the ballet director) attempt at explaining the racial epithet of “chink” was endearing. Although, this isn’t a real movie that explores racial distinction, prejudice or interracial dating. Its more of an informal acknowledgement that may be exist while letting the main meat of the story follow Li Cunxin’s personal and professional career. For example, there’s a little reverse racebending as Li Cunxin plays Don Quixote so when questioned if a Chinese man could play a Spaniard, it was pointed out Marlon Brando played a Chinese part of a film, after which life goes on.



The reasons of using a marriage to stave off being forcibly returned to China, the pressures of differing profession and also the subsequent disintegration of the marriage are explored. Although that first marriage leads to a divorce, our Asian leading man sweeps Australian ballerina Mary McKendry (played by Camilla Vergotis) figuratively and literally off her feet (whom he is still married to with three children).



I believe as a date movie should you desired to introduce the component of interracial dating, “Mao’s Last Dancer” is a great, emotional choice that highlights the Asian male protagonist in a confident, artistic, and masculine light. There aren’t a lot of movies that highlight AMWF (or AMXF romances for instance) a smaller amount positively, but “Mao’s Last Dancer” is surely a good movie in its own right.



It may be somewhat slow if you’re not into ballet there are extremely parts you might get bored with, however the dance cinematography, the acting and also the historical anachronism from the 1980s Communist politics, more than replace with it. But you never know, you may become familiar with a little something about ballet or living under China’s Cultural Revolution.



One of the most amazing thing is how this really is all based on the best-selling and true to life autobiography of the same name. Basically hadn’t known that, I'd have assumed the “too good to be true” storyline was an obvious ploy at emotional manipulation.

White Asian Guys

The bottom line is, “Mao’s Last Dancer” is really a feel great movie that pushes all the right buttons and all the more inspiring since it is true.

 

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