Guest Post: Get Romantic – Watch Chinese Love Films to Help You Learn Mandarin

I’ve always been a romantic at heart, which means when it comes to watching movies, I often opt for a good love story. That’s why I like this guest post from Yang, recommending four outstanding Chinese love films that could help you improve your Chinese at the same time.

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Watching a great love story at the movies or on TV with your loved one is not just fun. It’s also an enjoyable way for you to learn Mandarin and understand more about Chinese culture.

So, today, we are going to recommend some of the most popular Chinese romance based films for you to enjoy:

1. 甜蜜蜜(Almost a Love Story)

1. tian mi mi

This film was released in 1996, just before the return of Hong Kong to China and contains an all-star cast. Director Peter Chan is one of the most famous directors in Hong Kong for love stories. Leon Lai was one of the Four Heavenly Kings (ie one of Hong Kong’s most popular stars during the 1990s) and, in 1996, at the peak of his career. Maggie Cheung, an internationally known Hong Kong actress, also starred in this film, which reflected life in the last decade of the city’s colonial period. In addition, the film honours one of China’s most famous singers (Deng Lijun/Teresa Teng) who passed away in 1995; in fact, one of her songs, Tian Mimi, is often heard throughout the film. The film won numerous plaudits at the Hong Kong film awards in 1996 and became known as one of the classic romantic Chinese films.

2. 色戒 (Lust Caution)

2. se jie

Another great adventure film from Ang Lee, the Oscar winning Taiwanese director. In this film he works with Tony Leung, one of Hong Kong’s top actors, and also Tang Wei, who became a major star after this film. The film attracted a lot of “buzz” when it was released as, besides its famous director and actors, it is very violent with very realistic, often graphic, sex scenes, which are still rare in Chinese films. In any event, the film has been described as a very sophisticated love story.

3. 北京爱情故事(Beijing Love Story)

3. Beijing love story

This film was released with the same name as an earlier hit TV series (similar to Sex and the City) but was not just a predictable extension of the TV show. Rather, the film accurately portrayed both the happiness and typical problems of couples of different ages in China. It has been described as a warm and sensitive film. Another noteworthy point is that the actor/director and leading actress actually fell in love with each other and were married after making the TV show.

4. 那些年,我们一起追的女孩(You Are the Apple of My Eye)

4. na xie nian

If you watch any of the “campus love”/puppy love TV series and films being produced all over China currently, they probably originated as a result of the huge success of this film. The film was directed by Jiu Ba Dao, one of Taiwan’s famous authors, who decided to make a film to honor his teenage love in school. He did not have any prior directing experience and the leading actor and actress were also unknowns. However, when the film was released, it was an instant success, breaking records in Taiwan, Hong Kong and mainland China—making the lead actors in the film superstars, and encouraging others to produce similar films.

Undoubtedly you have your own favorite Chinese films and, whatever they are, we’re sure that watching Chinese movies will help you learn how to speak Chinese more effectively.

If you are a fan of Chinese movies, why not let us know which ones you have watched, or why you liked them. Or even email us to tell us which one is your very favorite; we’d love to know!

Yang is a serial web entrepreneur whose latest website is Yang is passionate about learning new languages and cultures. You can check out the recent Chinese learning research here: How to learn Chinese.

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