Yellow Earth (1984)

  |  Drama, History, Music


Yellow Earth (1984) Poster

'Yellow Earth' focuses on the story of a communist soldier who is sent to the countryside to collect folk songs for the Communist Revolution. There he stays with a peasant family and learns... See full summary »


7.2/10
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  • Yellow Earth (1984)
  • Xueqi Wang in Yellow Earth (1984)
  • Yellow Earth (1984)
  • Yellow Earth (1984)
  • Bai Xue in Yellow Earth (1984)
  • Yellow Earth (1984)

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19 May 2014 | user-5-361267
Film Review
Yellow Earth is a classic film, which reflects that the situation of peasant's life is in yellow earth. At the beginning of the film, with a folk, the screen shows audience the background of this movie, which is a soldier came to yellow earth for collecting folk. With the development of story, the viewer can find that the situation of local environment is poor and austere, their thought is conservative and antiquated, and local people is humane and ignorance. However, through the soldier's describing, you can make comparison between yellow earth and the South in thought, education and so on. Although these traditional rules and culture were the same before many years ago, with the development and changing of society, China was changing. However, local people still live in the primitive China, their life is poor, cannot get education and keep the old traditional custom.

In Yellow Earth, there are some details reflecting thought of Confucian. The girls must obey parents' order and have matchmaker making match, which is the traditional thought for marriage. For example, when the soldier told them that girls can own choose husband and marriage by themselves in South now and people claim loving in freedom, Cui Qiao's father cannot accept this thought. He still thinks that daughter's marriage need traditional rules. If not, he thinks that it is not good for the girl. It not only reflects that thought of Confucian, but also shows that local people' thought is antiquated, adamant and old- fashioned. In the film, although Cui Qiao's father knows that Cui Qiao is not willing to marriage, he cannot change mind and persuade Cui Qiao agree. Except for this, When the soldier asks Cui Qiao's father about his daughter's marriage, the man told him that couple do not need premarital feeling, which means they do not need love each other. This action and thought is like in the antiquity. At the antiquity, girls do not know who will be her husband and what his appearance is. And Cui Qiao's father says this marriage was confirmed when Cui Qiao was a child, which is another traditional culture.

Second, in the film, it reflects that the position of women is low and the position between man and woman is not the balance. Girls cannot choose husband and have liberal love. Except for this, generally, the man can be older than girl and the differential of age is big. Like Cui Qiao and her husband. The reason why Cui Qiao will marry with her husband is when she was a child, her home is poor, and, for his brother, her father agree this marriage. In the local place, it is the common phenomenon. However, this kind of marriage is cruel and cannot be accept for girls. In the film, the bride does not have smile including not only Cui Qiao but also the bride is at the beginning of the film. For marriage, girls are not satisfied but they have to accept for their family and themselves. At yellow earth, girls have only one way that is marriage. However, only one way is that they cannot decide and choose by themselves, which is dolorous.

Third, it is conflicted for local people to see yellow earth. In the film, a shot is Cui Qiao' father stand on yellow earth, he looks at sky and feel helpless, sad, because there is no rain for a long time. He told the soldier that no one want to farm in yellow earth because this sod is not suitable to farm, but they cannot give up yellow earth because they depend on this sod to live. This is a conflicted emotion. Local people know the problem of sod but they think this sod feed them, so they cannot give up yellow earth. And, Cui Qiao has the same conflicted emotion. She cannot accept her marriage but she cannot oppose for her brother and father, which reflects that she is a humane and dutiful daughter.

Except for these, through film, I find that local people have not good education at that place, so it causes that they are unknown and thought is antiquated. When the soldier wants to write a couplet, Cui Qiao refuses him because no one knows words. They cannot get education, it caused that their thought is antiquated and do not want to know new information and rules. They still keep to tradition. And in the film, there a lot of time having no dialogue. Local people are silence. They do not talk with others, only when they meet difficulty, they can sing a folk to say about the difficulty of their life. At the end of film, Cui Qiao wants to change her life, she try her best to find the new way. She wants to get freedom. So, she leaves her home, cut her hair and find to the Red Army by herself. It means the girl aspire to freedom.

Thus, I think that this film – Yellow earth is good film. It lets the viewer know that farmers' life in yellow earth at that time and a traditional custom.

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Drama | History | Music | Romance

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