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Chinese Box [Unrated] [DVD] [1997]

Wayne Wang's dramatic look at the human politics behind the handover of Hong Kong from British to Chinese control gets an upscale presentation in this DVD edition. Chinese Box has been given a letterboxed transfer at its original aspect ratio of 1.85:1, which has been enhanced for anamorphic playback on 16 x 9 monitors. The audio has been mastered in Dolby Digital Stereo; the dialogue is in English and the feature has been given optional subtitles in English and Spanish. As a bonus, the disc includes an audio commentary from director Wang, his documentary on Hong Kong, Home Movies, and his little-seen 1991 feature Life Is Cheap...But Toilet Paper Is Expensive in its entirety.

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    Special Features

    • Unrated director's cut
    • Director commentary
    • Wayne Wang's 1997 "Home Movies" documentary
    • Wayne Wang's feature prequel: "Life is Cheap... but Toilet Paper is Expensive"
    • 16 x 9 widescreen
    • English and Spanish subtitles
    • Closed Captioned


    Chinese Box
    Hong Kong emigrant Wayne Wang directed and co-wrote (with Paul Theroux, Jean-Claude Carriere and Larry Gross) this story set in "the Pearl of the Orient" as the British government prepared to hand over the city to China in 1997. John (Jeremy Irons) is an English journalist who has lived in the city for some time; while in some ways he still feels like an outsider, he's come to think of Hong Kong as a home and has close friends there. John is also in love with Vivian (Gong Li), a one-time prostitute who now runs a bar owned by her fiancé, Chang (Michael Hui). John is struggling with the realization that he can never have Vivian as his own, when he learns that he has leukemia; the British are to give the reigns of power back to the Chinese in six months, but John's doctors tell him he isn't likely to live long enough to see it happen. He quits his job and begins wandering the streets, recording his observations of the city on videotape when he meets Jean (Maggie Cheung), a young woman who makes her way selling whatever she can scavenge, and who hides a secret behind the scarves that obscure her face. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

    Cast & Crew

    • Jeremy Irons
      Jeremy Irons - John
    • Gong Li
      Gong Li - Vivian
    • Maggie Cheung
      Maggie Cheung - Jean
    • Michael Hui
      Michael Hui - Chang

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