Ese tema de la mujer inmolándose por el honor de su amado es común en el melodrama de los 30. De pronto es repetitivo salvo por la ambientación. Lo mejor de "El expreso de Shanghai" está para cuando la tormenta política pasó e inicia el tormento melodramático; el personaje de Dietrich encerrándose entre la penumbra y sufriendo en silencio. Gran escena. Es lo mejor de toda la película.
After an underwhelming run of catching up on this year's Oscar contenders, it was refreshing to revisit a classic of pre-Code Hollywood weirdness. Don't go into a Sternberg movie expecting an airtight tale of intrigue. His method is more to drop a woman like Marlene Dietrich—not to mention Anna May Wong—into the middle of a flimsy plot whose action is ostensibly driven by (much less interesting) men. A wet nightmare.
Von Sternberg and Dietrich's collaborations have been such a great revelation for me. Working through them chronologically we see the evolution of style for both. Von Sternberg placing many of the world's major players in a microcosm where doors are constantly being opened and closed and communication between people is often confused. Playing on the time's strict moral codes using faith and trust as its vessels.
Surely iconic, Shanghai Express is to be watched in a psychotropic mood of fascination or terminal, bridge-burning melancholy. Formal, uncommitted, an-intense, non-seducing, transported beyond critical negativity (its human interactions are either arthritic like society games of manners or wearing their hearts on starched sleeves) & positive feedback, it is a piece of film DNA & early example of hyperrealism that may
A cryptic love story between the mysterious and attractive outcast Shanghai Lily and her ex-lover dr. Harvey wrapped in an interesting adventure starring a train in the Chinese civil war. Some of the humor, mostly coming from Sam Salt, seems to rely on stereotyping the Chinese as an inferior and weird people, which reminds you of the fact you're watching a Pre-Code film. Fun to watch. With great acting by Dietrich.
Just saw Shanghai Express last week on TCM. I've seen it since I was 13, but watched again just to look at the lighting over Dietrich. And stayed, enamoured over von Sternberg's storytelling of something reminiscent of "The General Died At Dawn". Got lost in Travis Banton's costumes: the black lacquered ostrich feathered hat and coat Dietrich wears midway. Loved her hair. Love JVS. JVS fans, post comments.