Even on a fairly crummy torrent rip you can tell that Horse Thief is a work of immense pictorial beauty, and utterly transporting in the way those images are combined with sound (ritual, alien, natural) to evoke a spirit bigger than its tale. Haven't done enough delving into the Fifth Generation, but still influential is the way plot points are elided or for, or shown by, the natural surroundings.
Rewatch on Diskino blu-ray (2K restoration from Xi'an Film Studio) with the original Tibetan track, felt like watching this for the first time. BE SURE TO WATCH THE CORRECT VERSION!!! (Even that 4K restoration from China Film Archive is a total ridiculous thing because they used the software to convert the whole film into 48fps...)
Fifth Generation Beijing Film Academy grads of 1982 heralded a new era of Chinese cinema. 'The Horse Thief' is an ambitious aesthetic triumph in a post-Maoist era where mystical themes, once banned, were reasserted into the creative psyche of the nation's cinematic output.
Usage of cinemascope lens was good , beautiful images but ... Editing was so amateurish because these transitions especially dissolve effect has no lots of meanings. Just one. If it use with repetitive format ,scenes are losing its own meaning and sense of time. And this dubbing incompatible with the performance of actors.it is good visually but rest of it not perfect ...
Defying all authoritarian orders, Tian conjures with compelling image and sound this anthropological, proto-black metal offering to the heavens in ritual of an ambient meditation on belief. The vulture circle feedings are behaviorally adopted into grave burials, both a transfigurative cleansing of spirit as social ostracization from herd mentality extrapolates the fated, cyclical paradox that is life.
This film lost me, as all films will do(Andrei Rublev, Lacombe Lucien, etc ,etc), when they killed a living animal for the sake of a movie. That should not be tolerated by any rational, compassionate movie goer or maker. There is just no call for it, yet it happens so often...even still today! Killing for art? That is ridiculous. No true artist would intentionally harm anything for the sake of their art!