Gada Meilin

Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning's "Gada Meilin" is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence that he's getting better with every pic.

Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s getting better with every movie. Pic opened in Beijing in July to underwhelming biz, but could have minimal offshore legs among curious Asiaphiles in film weeks.

After wrapping his “war & peace” trilogy with “Sunset,” film is the second in a “life & environment” trilogy that Feng begun back in 1989 with “The Ozone Layer Vanishes.” Gada, gruffly played by Mongolian thesp Ebusi, led an uprising by herdsmen in the late ’20s to prevent the sale of chunks of the Horqin grasslands to Japanese interests, before being killed at age 39 in 1931. Characters are basically stereotypes, though played with a touch more veracity than usual and, despite not being in widescreen, pic still has a reasonable sweep, aided by San Bao’s propulsive-melancholy score. “Meilin” is an honorary Mongolian title meaning head warrior.

Gada Meilin

China

Production: A China Film Group Co., CCTV, Beijing Forbidden City Film Co. production. (International sales: Beijing Forbidden City, Beijing.) Produced by Yang Buting, Zhou Boxiong, Zhao Huayong. Directed, written by Feng Xiaoning.

Crew: Camera (color), Feng, Gang Qiang; editor, Cheng Jie; music, San Bao; art directors, Guo Libin, Gao Hongxiang. Reviewed at Montreal World Film Festival (World Greats), Aug. 24, 2002. Mandarin dialogue, Mongolian songs. Running time: 119 MIN. With: Ebusi, Liu Wei, Deligal, Turmen.

More Film

  • ABBA performing as an unknown band

    The Secret Majesty of ABBA: They Were the Feminine Pop Opera of Their Time

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

  • Dwayne Johnson's 'Skyscraper' Leads China Box

    China Box Office Propels 'Skyscraper' to $75 Million Overseas

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

  • Durban FilmMart Celebrates Women as Industry

    Durban FilmMart Celebrates Women as Industry Still Struggles With Transformation

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

  • MayFair, directed by Sara Blecher

    Sara Blecher’s ‘Mayfair’ Brings Feminine Gaze to Gangster Tale

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

  • Todd Brown, XYZ Films

    African Finance Under Spotlight at Durban FilmMart  

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

  • Ryan Reynolds'Deadpool' panel, Comic-Con International, San

    Ryan Reynolds Wants to Explore Deadpool's Bisexuality in Future Films

    Nicely shot in the endless, rolling grasslands of Inner Mongolia and the deserts just south, Feng Xiaoning’s “Gada Meilin” is a notch above most exotic Chinese dramas devoted to minority ethnic heroes. Though Feng still shows few signs of being any more than a journeyman helmer, pic is further evidence, after “Purple Sunset,” that he’s […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content