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Kung Fu Movies Highlights Istanbul Film Festival

2012-04-12 13:27:38        Chinese Films

The 31st Istanbul Film Festival [Photo:]

In honor of 2012 being declared the year of Chinese culture in Turkey, the 31st Istanbul Film Festival has created a section for Chinese cinema, and in particular the art of WuXia.

A selection of the best, most original, most prominent examples of the cinematic genre will be showcased at the festival. CCTV correspondent, Natalie Carney went to have a look.

Wu-Xia is a close relative to the traditional Kung Fu movies, yet unlike its comparative, which centers on the action, the fictional works of Wu-Xia tell chivalric stories decorated with martial arts.

As part of the special Chinese dedicated section at this year's Istanbul Film Festival, Kung Fu expert Wang Qun led a group discussion exploring the art form at length.

Eight Wu-Xia films, chosen by Turkish members of the film festival, will be screened including five belonging to new martial arts. Yet Ms. Wang says it's not so much about the action and aesthetics.

Wang Qun, Kung Fu expert, said, "We put more emphasis on human emotions, it goes beyond martial arts. For example, the director Ang Lee said that the movie "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", is about the character's feelings and that's why the film won four Oscars."

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon went on to draw the world's attention to Wu-Xia films.

Ann Hui, award-winning director, said, "It's a very well made Kung Fu movie, but the story telling and the narrative is very western. It has character; it has suspense, it has a philosophy. So it's something added on, so it makes the film much more. The western audience will be much more appreciative of WuXia because of that."

Another movie that did well at International box offices and is expected to receive high acclaim at the Istanbul Film Festival is "Hero" directed by Zhang Yimou.

He said, "It is an amalgamation of all the different traditions in Chinese filmmaking."

Ann Hui, an award-winning director from Hong Kong, where Wu-Xia is said to originate from more than 50 years ago, says the genre has become one of the most important mainstream genres in Chinese Cinema today.

Hui said, "It is innovative, imaginative and it can translate because it's got fantastic action sequences."

And that's translated into big money at the box office. Wu-Xia films bring in billions of dollars annually both domestically and internationally.

All of the films screened at the Istanbul Film Festival are adapted from modern Wu-Xia literature; stories that consist of magic, strange events and mysteries along with heroism and revenge.

Through its human-interest stories, intricately choreographed action scenes and aesthetically pleasing cinematography, Wu-Xia has brought Chinese cinema to the world. Quite fitting then to have those films highlighted at The Istanbul Film Festival, which also crosses cultural borders.


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