A Touch of Sin (2013)

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Avg Rating: 3.5 / 5. Voted: 28

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AKA: Tian Zhu Ding
Year: 2013
Directed by: Jia Zhang-ke
Starring: Jiang Wu, Zhao Tao, Wang Baoqiang, Luo Lanshan
Country: China, Asian Cinema
Language: Mandarin, Cantonese (English subtitles)
Runtime: 02:09:20
Genres: Prostitution

Plot – Spoilers/Favorite Scenes:
A Touch of Sin is a modern Wuxia (martial arts) tale that was nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes and won the Best Screenplay award. It has 4 different storylines set around unique people who for the most part lead common-man lives. All the four narratives are based on real-life incidents from China.

Dahai is possibly one of the most interesting characters in modern cinema – someone who finds himself stuck in the past while everyone and everything around him is moving on. There is a strong sense of bitterness and frustration in himself at his inability to adequately change to suit his changing environment. This is something that surely can resonate with people across cultures and countries, particularly in current times.

This is a beautiful movie aesthetically, beginning with the ripe red tomatoes in the overturned truck lying still, to Zhou San’s son watching him carve an apple. There are small subtleties like Xiao Yu being hinted at as having martial art qualities when she is alert to the presence of a snake nearby, even before it emerges to cross her path.

If you live in a city, you will also probably identify with the come and go/high attrition type jobs that are quite deftly tackled here. A great movie to kick back and sink into a joyous mood of melancholy.

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Vampire Cat
Vampire Cat
August 7, 2023 7:47 pm

disappointed that Chairman Meow wasn’t in this movie.

August 16, 2022 2:14 am

Not a very effed up movie but definitely one of the best movies on this site.

July 17, 2022 9:14 pm

Fantastic movie! Beautifully shot and compelling acting throughout. It’s not a martial arts movie whatsoever, but makes up for this in other ways ????????????

June 5, 2021 7:57 pm

Dear Jia Zhangke,

I have watched your movie 3 times this week, it is an absolute masterpiece! Please accept my humble gratitude and admiration. I have fallen head over heels, deeply, madly, in love with your wife Zhao Tao; she is so incredibly attractive and beautiful. I am sure that the two of you do not object if I invite her for a nice dinner in a good French restaurant. Rest assured, master Jia Zhangke, that she will not regret it!

Kahn V
Kahn V
May 13, 2021 6:12 am

Totally waste of my time very shit movie

Matisse Famke
Matisse Famke
March 17, 2021 1:25 am

A Touch of Sin, from the effulgent director Jia Zhangke, is a beautiful if graphic take on life amid the corruptions of an economically booming China, the fiscal inequity and universal nepotism is delivered with blistering bureaucratic emancipation.

October 20, 2020 9:57 am

This brilliant masterpiece has won 18 prizes from different international movie festivals. Piece of Asian art. Absolutely enjoyed the beauty of it. Thx alot

October 25, 2018 11:38 am

it is wonderful movie which is carved with actual incidents