Espionage thriller has avant-garde edge

By Xu Fan ( ) Updated: 2015-04-24 06:18:26

Espionage thriller has avant-garde edge

Chinese actor Ge You and actress Zhang Ziyi. Jiang Dong / China Daily

Ten years after co-starring in the Oscar-nominated blockbuster The Banquet, stars Zhang Ziyi and Ge You have reunited in an espionage thriller.

The Wasted Times is a wartime spy story involving Japanese invaders in the 1930s. It will premiere across the mainland during the National Day holiday.

Wang Zhonglei, co-founder of Huayi Brothers, says the big budget movie is suitable for release during the competitive holiday season, because they believe it is destined to be a blockbuster.

In a trailer released on Monday, Zhang, wearing exaggerated make up, speaks in Shanghai dialect and asks "mysterious" questions.

"How do you want me to die? Murder? Or suicide?"

The trailer continues with more weird dialogue, hinting that the WWII-themed movie is likely to have an avant-garde edge.

Ge, a comic actor and a household name in China, says that his character is a "powerful and wealthy" person, but refuses to give further details.

Zhang was also reluctant to reveal more about the story, but sang the praises of the director Cheng Er, whose works have been nominated for awards at a number of international film festivals, such as South Korea's Busan International Film Festival and France's Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival.

"Cheng is young, but he is a very talented filmmaker," Zhang says.

Japanese star Tadanobu Asano also has a major role in The Wasted Times.

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