Movie Review: Mystery

By Michelle Xia

Jealously can cause someone to act recklessly. In the case of the movie “Mystery” (浮城謎事), jealously became the fuel for many of the unfortunate happenings.

The first scene was the gruesome death of a young college student named Xiao Ming as she was reported to have died from a tragic car accident. Later in the story, as we uncover the live of an officer Yong Zhao and his two spouses, we find out that there was more behind the story. Yong Zhao has two children, each one with two different mothers, and would constantly go house to house to visit them.

Lu Qie, Yong Zhao’s legal wife, was unaware of Yong Zhao’s cheating ways. One day, Sang Qie, the mother of the other children, invites Lu Qie to a bakery and discovers Yong Zhao with Xiao Ming in the streets. Unraveling Yong Zhao’s womanizer lifestyle, Lu Qie’s outlook on him changed. She found out about the relationship Sang Qie had with him and about other woman as well. Jealously took over both the women’s minds as they follow Xiao Ming one day.

With severe beating on her head with a rock and a hard push, Xiao Ming was left rolling down a cliff to the highway where she was later hit by the car. Her doom was a result of the actions caused by Yong Zhao.

This film announces the power of love and his ability to make people act out of character. For Lu Qie, she first believed her husband was loyal; she continued to stay with him even after she found out about Xiao Ming. After Sang Qie professes her unconditional love towards Yong Zhao, Lu Qie leaves in peace for the respect of her, now to be, ex-husband. Although shown in a rather gruesome setting, the message of love is still shown throughout the movie.

With powerful effects of setting switches and strong narration, the director Lou Ye, told the story through character flaws and interactions. Ye reveals and represents some stories that are never told to depict to characters of China. By the New York Asian Film Festival, this film is released for public viewing in Lincoln Center and is definitely an interesting and intense watch.

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