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Contemporary Sino-French CinemasAbsent Fathers, Banned Books, and Red Balloons$
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Michelle E. Bloom

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780824851583

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824851583.001.0001

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Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Flight of the Red Balloon as a Sino-French Makeover

Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Flight of the Red Balloon as a Sino-French Makeover

(p.109) Chapter 3 Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Flight of the Red Balloon as a Sino-French Makeover
Contemporary Sino-French Cinemas

Michelle E. Bloom

University of Hawai'i Press

Insufficient Taiwanese funding accounts in part for directors such as Tsai’s and Hou Hsiao-hsien’s French connections. Having set a precedent for working outside of the Sinophone world with Café Lumiere, shot and set in Japan with Japanese dialogue, pillar of Taiwanese cinema Hou went “further West” when he accepted an invitation from the Musée d’Orsay to make a film with at least one scene in the museum and starring French icon Juliette Binoche. Hou connected with France through Albert Lamorisse’s 1950s near-silent short, The Red Balloon (1956), which inspired Hou’s Sino-French feature, Flight of the Red Balloon (2007). Too loosely related to the original to be called a remake, Flight qualifies as a “makeover,” to invoke Andrew Horton’s term. Intertextual references to other art forms, such as painting (Félix Vallotton’s The Ball, 1888) and music (Camille Dalmais’ remake of Tsai Chin’s “Chin Chin”), contribute to Flight’s Sino-Frenchness.

Keywords:   Hou Hsiao-hsien, Albert Lamorisse, Félix Vallotton, Tsai Chin, Song Fang, Juliette Binoche, remake, makeover, musée d’Orsay, Paris

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