The Strange Fox
Dir: Chan Pei
Scr: Law Bo-man
Cast: Cheung Wood-yau, Mui Yee, Chan Ho-kau, Au-yeung Kim, Poon Yat On
1957 / B&W / D Beta / Cantonese / 87min
The story of a forbidden love between a fairy and a human is a staple of the Chinese fantasy genre. Here, a thousand-year-old fox fairy falls in love with an earnest scholar, only to be captured by a Taoist priest who is determined to put her away for a milliennia. Unlike Chan’s other special effects-driven fantasies, this film managed to break out of the mundane studio set and into the beautiful outdoors. The finale – featuring the fox fairy taking on soldiers from the heavens – not only shows Chan’s ability at picking the perfect set, but also his ability in setting up action scenes and exquisite shot composition. Though the film was originally shot in Eastman color by cinematographer Sahara Fukumatsu, the only print available for screening today is the black-and-white version.
||Cinema, Hong Kong Film Archive
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