(1993)4.5Lucia BozzolaBanned in China, Chen Kaige's Farewell, My Concubine (1993) was internationally celebrated for its rich detail in depicting the lifelong friendship of two Peking Opera singers, from the 1930s Japanese invasion to the 1970s aftermath of the Cultural Revolution. While the film ran into trouble for, among other things, its unstinting portrayal of the personal destruction wrought by Communism, the grandly scaled epic also meant to celebrate the tradition of Peking Opera, with its Dickensian training rituals. The loss of the opera becomes a loss of beautiful artistry, as the opera's passionate hues are perverted into political Red and the spectacle of operatic performance turns into vituperative social chaos after the Revolution. Co-winner of the Palme d'Or at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival (with The Piano), Farewell, My Concubine was also nominated for the Best Foreign Film Oscar as the entry from Hong Kong, as well as Best Cinematography. After its international success, Farewell, My Concubine was briefly released in China in edited form before being banned a second time.