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Sophie's Revenge

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Sophie's Revenge

(Fei Chang Wan Mei)
Sponsored by: Sympatico

Canadian Premiere

  • China / South Korea2009
  • 107 min
  • 35mm
  • Mandarin with English subtitles
Official Selection, New York Asian Film Festival 2010
Official Selection, Udine Far East Film Festival 2010

Genre

RomanceComedy

Screening Times

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“Infectious fun... a goofy, satisfying dose of girl power” — G. Allen Johnson, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE

Credits

Director: Eva Jin
Screenplay: Eva Jin
Cast: Zhang Ziyi, Fan Bingbing, Peter Ho, So Ji-sub, Ruby Lin
Producers: Zhang Ziyi, Ling Lucas, Ming Beaver Kwei
Print Source: CJ Entertainment

Hockey

Description

Love has two distinct sides to it. It can be infinitely beautiful—and infinitely cruel. Just ask Sophie (Zhang Ziyi). A successful comic artist bursting with imagination, she’s preparing for her marriage to Jeff (So Ji-sub), a loving and prosperous surgeon. But then love reveals its dark facet, in the form of the venomous actress Joanna (Fan Bingbing), who steals her guy away from her. Sophie is devastated. The vivacious and creative young woman is reduced to a total wreck, stuffing her face alone in front of the TV, getting shamelessly drunk and even stooping so low as to spy on her ex and his new flame. A plan, though, takes shape in Sophie’s mind. She has two months to ruin the couple, recapture Jeff, get her wedding back on track and take vengeance on Joanna. And she’ll recount the whole matter in a new comic strip, for the benefit of anyone in a comparable situation. Sophie teams up with Gordon (Peter Ho), a photographer who’d previously been with Joanna, to put her plot in motion. Thing is, the famous actress proves to be a much tougher opponent than expected, and Sophie’s schemes will put her on a path to pain and humiliation…

Zhang Ziyi’s debut as a producer, SOPHIE'S REVENGE is a fresh, funny and flavourful romantic comedy, following a classic template but with an enormous amount of cleverness and creativity. Thanks to eye-popping art direction and seamlessly integrated digital effects, screenwriter/director Eva Jin ushers us right into Sophie’s singular imagination. Using cartoonish imagery to communicate Sophie’s states of mind, SOPHIE'S REVENGE often recalls Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s delicious AMÉLIE, though its hectic pace, multilateral humour and eccentric protagonist place it apart from Jeunet’s wistful work. There’s also a touch of SEX AND THE CITY in the dynamics between Sophie and her two girlfriends, and of course the chic, haute-couture outfits they favour. However, for all the visual splendour, sparkling dialogue and a first-rate cast including Fan Bingbing (BODYGUARDS AND ASSASSINS), also at Fantasia this year) and Korea’s So Ji-sub (the imperturbable gangster in the excellent ROUGH CUT, seen at Fantasia last year), the keystone of the whole affair is of course Zhang Ziyi (2046, CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON). She shines brightly in this rare comedic turn, bringing so much verve and charm to the proceedings. Infusing the slightly unhinged Sophie with such a degree of candour and charisma, Zhang confirms herself as one of her generation’s most versatile talents.

—Nicolas Archambault (translated by Rupert Bottenberg)

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