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A Touch of Sin - DVD Review


 Starring: Jiang Wu, Wang Baoquiang, Zhao Tao

Directed By :  Jia Zhang-ke


Touch of Sin – 2013

Chinese cinema has become more mainstream in the West in recent years , for years the West has indulged in the many films from Hong Kong,Taiwan..

But as China becomes more in line with the West ,their film makers are venturing into genres and stories which one may have not seen twenty years ago.

Of course China is still a Communist country and some subjects in film are still scrutinised heavily before films are allowed to be screened in the region.

Director ,Writer Jia Zhangke is a student of the Beijing Film Academy and one of China's new lights in Chinese cinema. . Jia flms have met with critical praise not just in the East but in the West to.

Unlike Jia's previous works Touch of Sin ventures more into a dynamic piece of cinema then he is known for. Even though the film is actually based on four events which actually took place in modern day China within the last two decades. .

Bonding the stories into one film is quite clever as though there is no connection between them in reality Jia uses the geographical borders of each of the stories locations to loosely attach one to the other. These connections are quite vague and your have to be vigilant to notice them.

Jia has based his film on four events which vary from violent crime , revenge , and the way large corporations make money at the expense of their employees safety or working conditions.

Jia fuses these into a intriguing two hours which will shock and dumbfound you , combined the stories have elements evident in many Wuxia films of the 70's . Hence the title which shares a resemblance to King Hu's classic 'A Touch of Zen'' ..

Though the film had been cleared for release in China in 2013 , it then became known that the film was put on hold and Chinese media where instructed not to comment or do interviews about the film.

The base line for all the four stories is how the working class of China are persecuted and often treated as second class citizens by the new elite rich which often have connections with organised crime.

Of course the subject matter is one that China does not want being shown to it's cinema goers .

But with a bit of web browsing you find that the stories that the film is based on are actually far worse then portrayed within the film. 

Usually fact based dramas are often exaggerated to add that bit of suspense to the proceedings , if anything Touch of Sin is UN-exaggerated , probably so it had a chance to get a actual release in the Mainland.

Touch of Sin is also a film which gives you a false comfort ,especially with the first story which for me offered some quite comical moments before it unleashes it's fury at the screen , this continues through out the next couple of stories ending with a somewhat sad and depressing end story.

I am trying hard not to spoil the films content as any film which only has a half hour or so to tell a story there's only so much that can be done in film to portray that story.

But once you have viewed the film please look up the events that inspired the film and your find that the reality is a far worse scenario then you could imagine ..

The film is based on the events named below.

Hu Wenhai (2001)

    Zhou Kehua (2004-2012)

    Deng Yujiao incident (2009, female)

    Foxconn suicides (2007-2013)

Touch of Sin is one of the must see films emerging from China's Mainland , it's content may be violent and depressing at times but it is a engaging film that mesmerises at times and then shocks you the next.

Review by Sertes Nake





Directed by Jia Zhangke
Written by Jia Zhangke
Jiang Wu
Zhao Tao
Wang Baoqiang
Cinematography Yu Lik-wai
Release dates
17 May 2013 (Cannes)
Running time 135 minutes
Country China
Language Mandarin


 source : wikipedia





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