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Vertical Ray of Sun [DVD] [2001] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Tran Nu Yên-Khê , Nhu Quynh Nguyen , Tran Anh Hung    DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: £57.95
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Region 1 encoding (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

Note: you may purchase only one copy of this product. New Region 1 DVDs are dispatched from the USA or Canada and you may be required to pay import duties and taxes on them (click here for details). Please expect a delivery time of 5-7 days.

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Product details

  • Actors: Tran Nu Yên-Khê, Nhu Quynh Nguyen, Le Khanh, Quang Hai Ngo, Chu Hung
  • Directors: Tran Anh Hung
  • Writers: Tran Anh Hung
  • Producers: Benoît Jaubert, Christophe Rossignon, Nicholas Simon
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Colour, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, DVD-Video, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, Vietnamese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: 18 Dec 2001
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B00005RDRJ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 86,815 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful film on human relations 3 Sep 2006
A wonderful film by master director Tran Anh Hung who gave us a series of equally well directed productions.

This film is all about human relations blend with wonderful music and an exceptional photography.

The actors took up their roles in a balanced way with each one able to show his/her best while at the same time to complement each other in a harmony of acting.

The music is spectacular combining well-chosen western music and Vietnamese.

It is of a particular importance to notice the sound of this film. Background sounds and effects strengthened by splendid photography make the viewer to feel the heat of the tropics, the rain and humidity and the coolness of the garden of the backyard.

But the most important aspect is the human relation, all presented for what they are in real life. While able to strengthen the virtues of fidelity does not condemn infidelity, while praising family ties and values does not shy away from questioning believes.

The photography is superb with the director of photography able to capture the sun, the bight areas and combine them perfectly with shades.

The contrast of the clean spotless dresses in bright colours with the run down walls of a city in the tropics is something one can notice and appreciate.

The collection of small details of the daily life that could have gone unnoticed become through the photography part of the beauty of this film.

The music is acting also as a tool of symbolism and one must pay attention to the beautiful group singing.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  38 reviews
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vietnamese Cinematic Treat 28 Sep 2004
By L. Shirley - Published on
This review refers to the DVD edition(Columbia/Tri Star) of "The Vertical Ray Of The Sun"...

This is a film that simply takes my breath away. Not only is it a captivating story, but how refreshing it is to view a film about the beautiful people and luscious land of Vietnam without all the atrocities of the war going on around the story. The brillant photography takes it all in, and under the exquistely artful direction of Tran Anh Hung we are treated to a visual feast.

This moving story revolves around three beautiful sisters, as they prepare a traditional banquet for relatives as a memorial to their mother. Each sister has their own hopes, dreams, and secrets. As their everyday lives gives us a glimpse at life in Hanoi, we can't help but to feel close to them, as one by one their stories come to light. The fantasies they share, the indiscretions they hide, and the love and support of this close knit family, combined with the scenic backdrop of the lush country will surely take you away to another world for a while. It is a world you may want to revisit often.

The DVD presents a fabulous look at it all, in widescreen, and with its rich colors. The sound has the choice of DD5.1 or 2.0, and surrounds wonderfully. Even the rain looks and sounds crystal clear. The language is in Vietnamese and there are optional English subtitles. There are some moments in the film where the sisters or other family members are singing, and it may have been nice to have susbititles for these as well, but to tell the truth, the voices and lullaby like quality of the music were so soothing, it doesn't really matter what langauge you hear it in.

This is a film for lovers of foreign films, romantic getaways, great storytelling and fine filmmaking.

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Watching a painting come to life 22 Jun 2003
By Pharoah S. Wail - Published on
First off, I just want to say that I am reviewing this in terms of the movie itself, not the DVD. I rented it but my place only has it on VHS. I watched it 5 times during one rent and I just have to review it. I don't know what extras the DVD does or does not have, but this movie is magical.
This has become one of my favorite movies of all time. I have a feeling that it may be too slow and thoughtful for the majority of the American audience, though. I don't see this as a fault of the movie at all. Only a fault in the bright, flashy dazzle, quick edit after quick edit style of tv, movies, sports, and commercials that Americans are surrounded by 24/7. If the picture isn't jumping around and changing every 1.3 seconds, the average American loses interest. Their (our) loss.
Scent Of Green Papaya has been a favorite of mine since I saw it a few years ago, thus when Vertical Ray showed up at the video store I had to rent it. I hate to slight Green Papaya, but now having seen both, this movie is the better of the two.
Vertical Ray is absolutely hypnotic. There are shots in this movie that take my breath away.
tran nu yen khe (Lien) is so sensual, magnetic, and free in this movie that I can't help but fall for her. I thought I fell for her in Green Papaya, but this movie goes way beyond that one. Her emotional range with just facial expressions, not to mention words, is so alluring. She is so perfectly entrancing. It's a strange thing to say, but just she herself...the way she looks at things, talks, and moves... her face... she is a work of art in and of herself. The camera truly loves her. I really can't explain it. She may be the very definition of grace and sensuality.
I don't think there is any lack of movement in this plot or screenplay. There is a lack of explosions, gunfire, and nudity, yes, but that in no way means the movie is missing anything. Also, I didn't see it mentioned in the couple reviews I read, but there is some very funny stuff in this movie! If you don't laugh out loud a few times during this movie then you aren't paying attention!
Obviously we are all different, and maybe it's just me, but I think the director of this movie and Green Papaya, tran anh hung, is amazing. There is absolutely no one in American cinema capable of making films like these. Now I need to see Cyclo.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A light in the dark. 2 May 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Merely another masterpiece from the best director in the world under the age of 40. This time, Tran Anh Hung takes us to Hanoi, where he introduces us to 3 sisters who are having some difficulty with the menfolk. The narrative framework, if you must call it that (if you must have one at all), consists of a loosely-connected series of incidents that take place in the one-month period between the anniversaries of the mother's, then the father's, deaths. A conversation between the 3 sisters at the anniversary party of the mother's passing reveals that the women have put their parents on a worshipful pedestal: an attempt to casually investigate the mother's old boyfriend before she was married is firmly discouraged. (Though not prevented, as we shall see.) It's soon revealed why their parents' conduct is NOW viewed by them as ideal, as perfect: their own conduct, at this time in their lives, is not so ideal, and as imperfect as life itself. The oldest sister is in an unhappy marriage in which both spouses are cheating; the middle sister, pregnant, has a husband who's frightened by impending responsibility and is considering escape; the much-younger sister, played by the luminous Tran Nu Yen-Khe from *The Scent of Green Papaya*, has been so sheltered all her life that she remains unsure of the mechanics of conception, and finds nothing particularly taboo about flirting with her own brother. Speaking of that last, it occurs during the most recurrent scenes in the film: we intrude on the brother and sister during several mornings, watching them wake up, do some excercises, smoke cigarettes, flirt, eat . . . all to the soothing sounds of Lou Reed in his mellow, middle-age period. As the movie progresses, the scenes become laden with as many nuances and as much meaning as any mundane routine from your own life. But if you weren't paying attention, if you weren't focusing, you'll have missed them. Tran Anh Hung's movies, like any works of art, demand a level of involvement from YOU, the viewer, that standard Hollywood productions do not. So, know what you're getting into here. If you're ready for something serious, check out *The Vertical Ray of the Sun*.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vertical ray of sheer beauty 11 Jun 2002
By Kuroneko1 - Published on
After the cold and sharp as knife, but explosive cyclo, the philosopher director returns with vertical ray of the sun.This time like the scent of green papaya, he uses a more laid back story with intense emotions. Film is mainly set in Hanoi the capital city, and tells the story of 3 sisters and their loved ones. Strange family relationships, marriages with hidden problems and secret lovers are issue of the film. This time director uses lots of dialogue to build up the stories unlike his last 2 movies. Thus we can zoom in to the characters deep thoughts without much effort. All these are made with minimal, simple, non pretentious but always brilliant ideas,making easy to understand the lives of the characters.He also uses the philosophic elements more economically this time unlike cyclo.
An interesting point is sex is always there , hiding but never shown directly to the viewer by the director . Vietnam is still one of those countries where issues like sex is taboo and traditional way of life is well preserved. Director chooses to show the things as they are in the country and tries to give the feeling that is shared by his characters.But interestingly, portrayal of flirtious acts of the sister and her brother in morning scenes are indeed set to confuse the viewer as showing how mixed emotions can be.
Most of the actors and actresses are from the last 2 Hung films so we are familiar with their capabilities.When it comes to cinephotography, Tran Anh Hung's films are very hard to beat. In door and out door scenes, lovely colours and well established shots are again the name of the game. Music choices are excellent and fits like a glove especially in morning scenes.
This movie may not be as beautiful as the scent or as explosive as cyclo. But Hung does his best to tell his not too strange story by not falling in to the trap of being boring.
In sum another excellent addition to the director's career.
An excellent watch and an excellent film to own.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars beauty 15 Mar 2005
By EriKa - Published on
A lush, slow moving visual mood movie with an amazing, intoxicating soundtrack. For the visual sensuality of this film alone, it is worth viewing. It makes Vietnam comes alive and certainly made me want to visit. In the film three sisters run a café together, but their lives are in very different places and they have different needs and desires. While there is not a great deal of action taking place here, the viewer is eventually treated to inside looks at the life of each sister and each struggle she must face. I found the film watchable mostly for its beauty, but I don't think this film will appeal to everyone.
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