Beautiful, interesting, incredible cinema.

See what’s playing
East Palace, West Palace
6.7
/10
85 Ratings

EAST PALACE, WEST PALACE

Dong gong xi gong

Directed by Zhang Yuan
China, 1996
Drama, LGBTQ+, Romance

Synopsis

After a random night raid in a local park, a young gay writer, A-Lan, is held for an intensive one-on-one interrogation. Unwanted memories offer glimpses of A-Lan’s tumultuous past. Through the night, an interrogating officer is both revolted and fascinated by A-Lan. An awkward love story unfolds.

Synopsis

After a random night raid in a local park, a young gay writer, A-Lan, is held for an intensive one-on-one interrogation. Unwanted memories offer glimpses of A-Lan’s tumultuous past. Through the night, an interrogating officer is both revolted and fascinated by A-Lan. An awkward love story unfolds.

Our take

One of the first films from mainland China to explicitly portray queer life, Zhang Yuan’s pioneering marvel bristles with the heady push and pull between lust and repression. As the setting shifts from a cruising hotspot to an integration room, what begins as a confession soon ignites a carnal fire.