Modern Masters


Directed by Lou Ye

China, 2019, 2h 6min, DCP, In Mandarin and French with English Subtitles

Modern Masters

There are no current or future screenings planned for this film.

“Roils with spy intrigue and sexual politics”
Film Comment

“[A] swoony charge of ideas about art, love, and espionage”
The Film Stage

“The most truly iconic performance that [Gong Li] has delivered in decades”
Slant Magazine

In Japanese-occupied Shanghai during WWII, a legendary actress (Gong Li) makes her return to the stage to appear in a play written by her former flame. Meanwhile, suspicions emerge that she has a hidden agenda. Director Lou Ye—himself a thorn in the side of the Chinese censors—depicts the story photographically in high-contrast black and white and narratively with a thousand shifting shades of gray.


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