Love and Duty

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China | 1931 | 153 minutes | BU Wancang

Chinese silent film icon Ruan Lingyu, frequently called the Greta Garbo of Shanghai, stars in this newly restored edition of one of the biggest films of early Chinese cinema, a decades-spanning romantic drama about a woman who pays dearly for following her heart. With live accompaniment by Donald Sosin.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Uptown

6:00 PM Date has passed SOn Standby Piano Player Donald Sosin scheduled to attend

Those who pursue what they know is right, despite pressure to settle for the conventional and expected, are the ones we admire most. In Love and Duty, a 1931 work by Chinese film pioneer Wancang Bu, the young and passionate Yang Naifan runs from her arranged marriage to be with her true love. Love and Duty's renowned cast, remarkable cinematography, and affecting story made it one of the biggest films of its time in China; it's considered one of Bu's best, impressive considering his prolific 40-year career. For many years, the film was believed lost, until a complete print was found in Uruguay in the 1990s. In 2014, it underwent a 2K digital restoration and was screened at the Shanghai Film Festival the same year. The film has gained a well-deserved second life, and many years after its production, Love and Duty is inspiring a new generation of romantics.

Live accompaniment provided by Donald Sosin.

Director Biography

Born in 1903 in Anhui, China, Bu was a prolific Chinese film director and screenwriter active between the 1920s and the 1960s. Originally a member of the Shanghai cinema scene, Bu worked for several studios before becoming a major director for the Mingxing Film Company. By 1931, Bu moved to Mingxing's rival, Lianhua, where he directed such films as Love and Duty (1931) and Peach Blossom Weeps Tears of Blood (1931) (both with Chinese screen legend, actress Ruan Lingyu).

Sponsored by Sponsor-A-Film: Richie Meyer & Susan Harmon, WASA North America Group, Hainan Airlines

Taiwan Institute

  • Original Language Title: 戀愛與義務
  • Director: BU Wancang
  • Principal Cast: Ruan Lingyu, Jin Yan
  • Premiere Status: Seattle
  • Country: China
  • Year: 1931
  • Running Time: 153 minutes
  • Producer: Li Minwei
  • Screenplay: Shilin Zhu
  • Cinematographers: Huang Shaofen
  • Filmography: Dream of the Red Chamber (1945); Eternity (1942); The Family (1941); Mulan Joins the Army (1939); A Spray of Plum Blossoms (1931); Peach Blossom Weeps Tears of Blood (1931); A Couple in Name Only (1927)
  • Language: Silent, with English and Mandarin intertitles
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP