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BFK | 15.10.2023 | I Am Not Madame Bovary (2016)

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Originaltittel: 我不是潘金莲
Visningsformat: DCP
Regissør: Feng Xiaogang
Manusforfatter: Liu Zhenyun
Skuespillere: Fan Bingbing (范冰冰), Dong Chengpeng (董成鹏), Guo Tao (郭涛), Fan Wei (范偉)
Produksjonsland: Kina
Språk: Mandarin
Undertekst: Engelsk
Lengde: 2 timer 8 minutter

“A sesame seed has become a watermelon. An ant has become an elephant.”


I denne satiriske komedien møter vi bonden Li Xuelian. Hun og mannen hennes, Qin Yuhe, samtykker i en falsk skilsmisse etter å ha blitt offer for en av Kinas mest beryktede lover. Men når Qin kunngjør sin kjærlighet til en annen kvinne, begynner Li på et tiår langt korstog for å frikjenne seg selv.


After falling victim to China’s cruel laws, Li Xuelian, a lowly villager, and her husband Qin Yuhe agree to fake a divorce. However, during their ersatz separation, Qin falls for another woman, leaving a deeply hurt Li out in the cold. Scorned, heartbroken, and living under the dreadful accusation of being Pan Jinlian - a 17th century Chinese adultress who conspired to kill her husband - Li sets off on a decade long crusade to clear her name. Despite her determination, she finds herself alone against the entire Chinese bureaucratic system, which could care less about a young woman’s plight. Yet, Li’s drive for exoneration may turn an ant into an elephant.

Director Feng Xiaogang constraints most scenes into a unique, yet beautiful, circular aspect ratio - referencing the literary paintings of China’s Song dynasty, which is hailed as China’s most culturally significant era.

With Liu Zhenyun’s sharp and unflinching dialogue, Du Wei’s thundering, percussive score, and Fan Bingbing’s tender and furious portrayal of a woman fighting for her pride, this film truly is a pleasure to experience.

Despite its apparent weighty and political tone, I Am Not Madame Bovary really plays out as a comedy. A striking insight into the gross negligence and laziness of governmental officials in modern day China.