Kwan’s most liberated and open-hearted film so far is about people who swing between fidelity and infidelity, marriage and divorce, motherhood and childlessness, true friendship and casual sex.
Stanley Kwan’s first feature since he came out as a gay in his documentary Yang+Yin: Gender in Chinese Cinema is a piercing account of relationships in a time of uncertainty – the time being 1997, the year Hong Kong returned to China’s sovereignity. Ah Moon (formerly sexpot Chingmy Yau) is a businesswoman who dies in a plane crash en route to Taipei; her computer-nerd husband Fung Wau, more numbed than grief-stricken, stumbles into a non-sexual relationship with the gay estate agent who offers to help him sell his apartment. Rosa (also played by Chingmy Yau) is another Hong Kong businesswoman, a few years older and wiser than Ah Moon; she has left her husband and moved to Taipei to open a boutique. The film’s plots turn on the fact that both women meet Jie, a young drifter from Taiwan who is briefly Ah Moon’s lover but just might be secretly interested in her husband…Through characters who oscillate between commitment and infidelity, marriage and divorce, maternity and childlessness, true friendship and casual sex, Kwan offers a very personal reflection on emotional insecurities. Superbly shot by Kwan Poon-Leung, this is Kwan’s most free-spirited and open-hearted film to date. In fact, probably his only mistake was asking an English critic to appear in a cameo role – says Tony Rayns. –Rotterdam
Stanley Kwan (simplified Chinese: 关锦鹏; traditional Chinese: 關錦鵬; Mandarin Pinyin: Guān Jǐnpéng; Jyutping: Kwan1 Kam2 Pang4; born October 9, 1957 in Hong Kong) is a Hong Kong Chinese film director and producer.
Kwan landed a job at the TVB after receiving a mass communications degree at Hong Kong Baptist College. Kwan’s first film was Women (1985), which starred Chow Yun-fat, and was a big box-office success.
Kwan’s films often deal sympathetically with the plight of women and their struggles with romantic affairs of the heart. Rouge (1987), Full Moon in New York (1989), Centre Stage (1992; aka Actress), a biopic on silent film star Ruan Lingyu and Everlasting Regret (2005), are all such typical Kwan films. Red Rose White Rose (1994) is an adaptation of an Eileen Chang novel.
Kwan came out as a gay man in 1996 in Yang ± Yin, his documentary looking at the history of Chinese-language film through… read more