welcome to lobos reviews

title image

Movie Review: Purple Butterfly

Alternate Title: Pretentious Crap

Story: What a waste of time! This mess of a tale about Japan's imminent invasion of China in the 1930s is disjointed, rambling and poorly edited.

Director Lou Ye has borrowed techniques from many other directors but without a clear vision of his own, this film is dead on delivery.

The time line is skewed and characters who we thought were dead, seem to return without explanation. I thought at one point that perhaps the film reels were switched and we were watching it out of order.

On top of a confusing story about the Purple Butterfly Chinese insurgents, undercover agents and spies there is a lack of dialogue. Instead of a script we are subjected to nonstop super close-ups of people who were either thinking, gazing, smooking, staring or at times drifting. The editor on this film must have drifted while working.

The film is also violent, dark, grainy, blurry, smoky and to depress us even further the rain is incessant.

Is there a redeeming quality? Hmm - yes. Some of the actors are nice to look at.

Acting: I don't call forlorn gazing, acting.

Predilection: I tend to like foreign films that are distributed in this country.

Critters: None.

Visual Art: Too rainy and dark to see anything.

Blatant Product Placement: None.

Soundtrack: All over the place, like the plot.

Theater Audience: Packed with a very silent, occasionally groaning crowd.

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Drift Range: High. I must have looked at my watch 25 times.

Squirm Scale: Only squirmed because of how bad it was.

Predictability Level: Who cared?

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: NO!

Nit Picking: Too many nits to pick.

Big Screen or Rental: Neither.

Length: A little over the two hour rule. Gasp!