Best Mainland Chinese Movies

by whittleboy615 | created - 26 Mar 2015 | updated - 4 months ago | Public

Best Mainland Chinese Movies Best Mandarin Movies

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1. In the Heat of the Sun (1994)

134 min | Drama, Romance

A story of four teenagers during Cultural Revolution in Beijing.

Director: Wen Jiang | Stars: Yu Xia, Shaobo Dai, Hua Fang, Xiaogang Feng

Votes: 3,496

85 (2) Won 6 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Winner 35mm, Color, B&W (Ending), 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

4K Restoration [L'Immagine Ritrovata] DVD (JPN: 16:9, Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, No English)

2. Devils on the Doorstep (2000)

139 min | Comedy, Drama, War

70 Metascore

During the Japanese occupation of China, two prisoners are dumped in a peasant's home in a small town. The owner is bullied into keeping the prisoners until the next New Year, at which time... See full summary »

Director: Wen Jiang | Stars: Wen Jiang, Kenya Sawada, Hongbo Jiang, Teruyuki Kagawa

Votes: 6,324 | Gross: $0.02M

85 (5) 35mm, B&W, Color (Ending), 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

DVD (US: 140-min Director's Cut, DVD-9, 16:9, Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, English Subtitles) DVD (FR: 140-min Cut, PAL, 16:9, Dolby Digital 5.1, No English)

3. House of Flying Daggers (2004)

PG-13 | 119 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

89 Metascore

A romantic police captain breaks a beautiful member of a rebel group out of prison to help her rejoin her fellows, but things are not what they seem.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Ziyi Zhang, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Andy Lau, Dandan Song

Votes: 104,533 | Gross: $11.05M

76 (6) Oscar Nominee Won 1 Golden Rooster Award, Best Film Nominee 35mm, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (HK: Best PQ, English Subtitles) Blu-ray (US, FR: Aspect Ratio Stretched)

4. City of Life and Death (2009)

R | 133 min | Drama, History, War

85 Metascore

In 1937, Japan occupied Nanjing, the Chinese capital. There was a battle and subsequent atrocities against the inhabitants, especially those who took refuge in the International Security Zone.

Director: Chuan Lu | Stars: Ye Liu, Wei Fan, Hideo Nakaizumi, Yuanyuan Gao

Votes: 9,902 | Gross: $0.12M

83 (6) 35mm, B&W, 2.20:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (English Subtitles)

5. Raise the Red Lantern (1991)

PG | 125 min | Drama, History, Romance

A young woman becomes the fourth wife of a wealthy lord, and must learn to live with the strict rules and tensions within the household.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Li Gong, Jingwu Ma, Saifei He, Cuifen Cao

Votes: 27,469 | Gross: $2.60M

88 (5) Oscar Nominee Won 2 Hundred Flowers Awards, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

Blu-ray (FR: Best PQ, No English) Blu-ray (DE: No English)

6. Farewell My Concubine (1993)

R | 171 min | Drama, Music, Romance

The story of two men, who met as apprentices in the Peking Opera, and stayed friends for over 50 years.

Director: Kaige Chen | Stars: Leslie Cheung, Fengyi Zhang, Li Gong, Qi Lü

Votes: 23,232 | Gross: $5.22M

89 (4) Oscar Nominee 35mm, Color, B&W, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

Blu-ray (UK: Best PQ, HD [Dated Source], English Subs, Region B) Blu-ray (KOR: HD [Dated Source], English Subtitles)

7. A Touch of Sin (2013)

Not Rated | 130 min | Action, Drama

77 Metascore

Four independent stories set in modern China about random acts of violence.

Director: Zhangke Jia | Stars: Wu Jiang, Baoqiang Wang, Tao Zhao, Lanshan Luo

Votes: 9,573 | Gross: $0.09M

80 (6) Won 2 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Nominee 2.8K, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (English Subtitles)

8. Hero (2002)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Adventure, History

85 Metascore

A defense officer, Nameless, was summoned by the King of Qin regarding his success of terminating three warriors.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Jet Li, Tony Chiu-Wai Leung, Maggie Cheung, Ziyi Zhang

Votes: 169,280 | Gross: $53.71M

86 (6) Oscar Nominee Won 7 Hong Kong Film Awards, Best Picture Nominee Won 4 Golden Rooster Awards Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, B&W, 2.39:1, DTS

Blu-ray (KOR: DTS-HD MA 5.1, Inferior English Subtitles) Blu-ray (US: Dolby Digital 5.1, Inferior English Subtitles) DVD (Best English Subtitles)

9. Mountain Patrol (2004)

PG-13 | 90 min | Action, Drama

77 Metascore

A moving true story about volunteers protecting antelope against poachers in the severe mountains of Tibet.

Director: Chuan Lu | Stars: Duobujie, Lei Zhang, Dao Qi, Xueying Zhao

Votes: 4,506 | Gross: $0.14M

82 (6) Won 2 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Winner Won 1 Hong Kong Film Award Won 1 Golden Rooster Award, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

10. Drug War (2012)

R | 107 min | Action, Crime, Drama

86 Metascore

A drug cartel boss who is arrested in a raid is coerced into betraying his former accomplices as part of an undercover operation.

Director: Johnnie To | Stars: Louis Koo, Honglei Sun, Yi Huang, Michelle Ye

Votes: 8,865 | Gross: $0.13M

82 (6) Golden Horse Best Feature Film Nominee 35mm, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (HK: BD-50, Dolby TrueHD 7.1, English Subtitles) Blu-ray (US: BD-25, DTS-HD MA 5.1, English Subtitles) Blu-ray (DE: DTS-HD MA 7.1, No English)

11. Postmen in the Mountains (1999)

Unrated | 93 min | Drama

62 Metascore

A father, a retiring mailman, walks his son over his job in the mountainous regions of Hunan province.

Director: Jianqi Huo | Stars: Hao Chen, Eddie Eagle, Ye Liu, Rujun Teng

Votes: 1,211 | Gross: $0.20M

80 (4) Won 2 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, 1.85:1

DVD (UK, HK, KOR: English Subtitles)

12. Havoc in Heaven (1963)

Not Rated | 114 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

Da Nao Tian Gong is a Chinese animated feature film directed by Wan Laiming and produced by all four of the Wan brothers. The film was created at the height of the Chinese animation ... See full summary »

Director: Wan Laiming | Stars: Yue-Feng Qiu, Run-Sheng Fu, Hans Alfredson, Ke Bi

Votes: 1,560

87 (2) Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award 2D Animation (35mm, Color), 1.37:1, Mono 2D-3D Conversion (Re-release)

Blu-ray 3D (CHN, TWN: New Aspect Ratio, Rescored, Redubbed, 20min Cut, English Subtitles, Region Free)

13. To Live (1994)

Not Rated | 133 min | Drama, War

After Fugui and Jiazhen lose their personal fortunes, they raise a family and survive difficult cultural changes during 1940s to 1970s China.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: You Ge, Li Gong, Ben Niu, Wu Jiang

Votes: 14,846 | Gross: $2.33M

89 (5) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

HDTV (1080p [Dated Source])

14. Spring in a Small Town (1948)

98 min | Drama, Romance

A lonely housewife finds her monotonous life altered when her childhood sweetheart returns to town.

Director: Mu Fei | Stars: Chaoming Cui, Wei Li, Yu Shi, Wei Wei

Votes: 2,351

88 (4) 35mm, B&W, 1.37:1, Mono

DVD (English Subtitles)

15. Springtime in a Small Town (2002)

PG | 116 min | Drama, Romance

86 Metascore

The eight-year marriage of Liyan and Yuwen has left them both unfulfilled and distant. A visitor arrives from Shanghai, a doctor who's an old school friend of Liyan's and, unbeknownst to her husband, Yuwen's childhood sweetheart.

Director: Zhuangzhuang Tian | Stars: Jingfan Hu, Jun Wu, Bai Qing Xin, Xiao Keng Ye

Votes: 1,226 | Gross: $0.04M

80 (5), Spring in a Small Town Remake Won 1 Golden Rooster Award 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

16. The Blue Kite (1993)

140 min | Drama

The lives of a Beijing family throughout the 1950s and 1960s, as they experience the impact of the Hundred Flowers Campaign, the Great Leap Forward, and the Cultural Revolution.

Director: Zhuangzhuang Tian | Stars: Tian Yi, Wenyao Zhang, Xiaoman Chen, Liping Lü

Votes: 2,497 | Gross: $0.36M

87 (3) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

17. Red Sorghum (1988)

Not Rated | 91 min | Drama, History, Romance

When a leprous winery owner in 1930s China dies a few days after his arranged marriage, his young widow is forced to run the winery to make a living while contending with bandits, her drunkard lover, and the invading Japanese army.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Li Gong, Wen Jiang, Rujun Teng, Ji Liu

Votes: 7,436

85 (4) Won 4 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Winner Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award, Best Film Winner 35mm, Eastmancolor, 2.39:1, Mono

18. Hibiscus Town (1987)

164 min | Drama, History, Romance

Love, humiliation and politics play out in a distant village of China during the cultural revolution.

Director: Jin Xie | Stars: Wen Jiang, Linian Liu, Xiaoqing Liu, Ning Xu

Votes: 712

86 (2) Won 4 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Winner Won 4 Hundred Flowers Awards, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, 2.39:1

DVD (JPN: 16:9, Dolby Digital, No English)

19. Yellow Earth (1984)

89 min | Drama, History, Music

'Yellow Earth' focuses on the story of a communist soldier who is sent to the countryside to collect folk songs for the Communist Revolution. There he stays with a peasant family and learns... See full summary »

Director: Kaige Chen | Stars: Xueqi Wang, Bai Xue, Quiang Liu, Tuo Tan

Votes: 2,029

84 (3) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, Mono

20. Xiu Xiu: The Sent-Down Girl (1998)

R | 99 min | Drama

Young teen girl Xiu Xiu is sent away to a remote corner of the Sichuan steppes for manual labor in 1975 (sending young people to there was a part of Cultural Revolution in China). A year ... See full summary »

Director: Joan Chen | Stars: Xiaolu Li, Lopsang, Zheng Qian, Jie Gao

Votes: 3,034 | Gross: $1.00M

83 (4) Won 7 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Winner 35mm, Color, 1.66:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

21. Suzhou River (2000)

83 min | Drama, Romance

76 Metascore

The river Suzhou that flows through Shanghai is a reservoir of filth, chaos and poverty, but also a meeting place for memories and secrets. Lou Ye, who spent his youth on the banks of the ... See full summary »

Director: Ye Lou | Stars: Xun Zhou, Hongshen Jia, Zhongkai Hua, Anlian Yao

Votes: 3,897 | Gross: $0.10M

81 (6) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

DVD (US, UK: English Subtitles)

22. The Story of Qiu Ju (1992)

PG | 100 min | Comedy, Drama

A pregnant peasant woman seeks redress from the Chinese bureaucracy after the village chief kicks her husband in the groin in this comedy of justice. As she is frustrated by each level of ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Li Gong, Peiqi Liu, Liuchun Yang, Kesheng Lei

Votes: 5,120 | Gross: $1.89M

82 (4) Won 2 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Winner Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award, Best Film Winner 16mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

Blu-ray (JPN: No English)

23. Ju Dou (1990)

PG-13 | 95 min | Drama, Romance

A woman married to the brutal and infertile owner of a dye mill in rural China conceives a boy with her husband's nephew but is forced to raise her son as her husband's heir without ... See full summary »

Directors: Yimou Zhang, Fengliang Yang | Stars: Li Gong, Wei Li, Baotian Li, Ma Chong

Votes: 7,119 | Gross: $1.99M

81 (5) Oscar Nominee 35mm, Eastmancolor, 1.37:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby)

Blu-ray (KOR: LPCM 2.0, English Subtitles) Blu-ray (JPN: No English)

24. Blind Shaft (2003)

Unrated | 92 min | Crime, Drama

78 Metascore

Two Chinese coal miners have hit upon the perfect scam: murder one of their fellow mine workers, make the death look like an accident, and extort money from the boss to keep the incident ... See full summary »

Director: Yang Li | Stars: Yixiang Li, Baoqiang Wang, Shuangbao Wang, Jing Ai

Votes: 2,345 | Gross: $0.03M

81 (5) Won 2 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Nominee 16mm, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

25. Coming Home (2014)

PG-13 | 109 min | Drama, Romance

81 Metascore

Lu and Feng are a devoted couple forced to separate when Lu is arrested and sent to a labor camp as a political prisoner during the Cultural Revolution. He finally returns home only to find that his beloved wife no longer recognizes him.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Li Gong, Daoming Chen, Huiwen Zhang, Tao Guo

Votes: 4,934 | Gross: $0.38M

81 (5) Won 1 Golden Horse Award Won 1 Hong Kong Film Award Won 1 Golden Rooster Award 4K, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Atmos

Blu-ray (FR: No English)

26. The Road Home (1999)

G | 89 min | Drama, History, Romance

71 Metascore

Prompted by the death of his father and the grief of his mother, a man recalls the story of how they met in flashback.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Ziyi Zhang, Honglei Sun, Hao Zheng, Yulian Zhao

Votes: 11,927 | Gross: $1.28M

80 (6) Won 4 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Winner Won 2 Hundred Flowers Awards, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, B&W, 2.39:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

DVD (English Subtitles)

27. Prince Nezha's Triumph Against Dragon King (1979)

65 min | Adventure, Animation, Fantasy

Tells the fable from Chinese mythology about the young warrior Zezha who takes on a group of evil dragons.

Directors: Shuchen Wang, Jingda Xu, Ding Xian Yan | Stars: Ke Bi, Banjô Ginga, Daisuke Gôri, Junko Hori

Votes: 761

83 (2) Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award 2D Animation (35mm, Color), 1.37:1, Mono

DVD

28. Deep in the Heart (2014)

119 min | Drama, Mystery

A young man tries to get away from his family's overwhelming power, but when he accidentally kills a local thug, his fate will be intricately linked to his father's. A woman, who for years ... See full summary »

Director: Yukun Xin | Stars: Weimin Huo, Xiaotian Wang, Yun Luo, Yuzen Yang

Votes: 1,229

83 (2) Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

DVD (TWN)

29. My Memories of Old Beijing (1983)

96 min | Drama

The film shows the society and life in Beijing in 1920s through the eyes of a 6 year old girl. Yingzi Lin moves to Beijing from Taiwan with her parents. They live in a lane in the southern ... See full summary »

Director: Yigong Wu | Stars: Wenping Chong, Yan Qin, Jie Shen, Zong-yao Tan

Votes: 263

My Memories of Old Beijing, 83 (2) Won 3 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Nominee 35mm, Color, 2.39:1

HDTV

30. The Goddess (1934)

TV-PG | 85 min | Drama

Street walker by night, devoted mother by day, a woman fights to get her young son an education amid criminal and social injustice in China.

Director: Yonggang Wu | Stars: Lingyu Ruan, Tian Jian, Zhizhi Zhang, Keng Li

Votes: 1,695

82 (3) 35mm, B&W, 1.37:1, Silent

DVD (English Subtitles)

31. The King of Masks (1996)

91 min | Drama

Wang Bianlian is an aging street performer known as the King of Mask for his mastery of Sichuan Change Art in a true story. His wife left him with and infant son over 30 years ago. The son ... See full summary »

Director: Tian-Ming Wu | Stars: Li Chen, Zhaoji Jia, Zhigang Zhang, Zhigang Zhao

Votes: 3,017 | Gross: $1.10M

81 (4) Won 2 Golden Rooster Awards 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

32. Still Life (2006)

Unrated | 111 min | Drama

81 Metascore

A town in Fengjie county is gradually being demolished and flooded to make way for the Three Gorges Dam. A man and woman visit the town to locate their estranged spouses, and become witness to the societal changes.

Director: Zhangke Jia | Stars: Tao Zhao, Zhou Lan, Sanming Han, Lizhen Ma

Votes: 5,503 | Gross: $0.07M

79 (6) 1080i, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

DVD (English Subtitles)

33. The Emperor and the Assassin (1998)

R | 162 min | Drama, History, Romance

75 Metascore

In pre-unified China, the King of Qin sends his concubine to a rival kingdom to produce an assassin for a political plot, but as the king's cruelty mounts she finds her loyalty faltering.

Director: Kaige Chen | Stars: Li Gong, Fengyi Zhang, Zhou Sun, Xiaohe Lü

Votes: 5,740 | Gross: $1.33M

79 (6) Won 1 Golden Rooster Award 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, DTS

DVD (English Subtitles)

34. Not One Less (1999)

G | 106 min | Drama

73 Metascore

In a remote mountain village, the teacher must leave for a month, and the mayor can find only a 13-year old girl, Wei Minzhi, to substitute. The teacher leaves one stick of chalk for each ... See full summary »

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Minzhi Wei, Huike Zhang, Zhenda Tian, Enman Gao

Votes: 7,901 | Gross: $0.59M

78 (6) Won 1 Golden Rooster Award Won 1 Hundred Flowers Award, Best Film Winner 16mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

35. Dearest (2014)

128 min | Drama

A story centered around a divorced couple living in a southern Chinese city Shenzhen and dealing with the disappearance of their missing son.

Director: Peter Ho-Sun Chan | Stars: Wei Zhao, Bo Huang, Dawei Tong, Lei Hao

Votes: 1,889

81 (2) Won 1 Hong Kong Film Award, Best Picture Nominee Won 1 Golden Rooster Award Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (HK: English Subtitles)

36. Aftershock (2010)

Not Rated | 135 min | Drama, History

The epic story of a family separated as a result of the Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976.

Director: Xiaogang Feng | Stars: Daoming Chen, Chen Li, Yi Lu, Fan Xu

Votes: 8,392 | Gross: $0.06M

79 (4) Won 2 Golden Rooster Awards, Best Film Nominee Won 4 Hundred Flowers Awards, Best Film Winner 35mm, Color, 2.39:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (HK: English Subtitles)

37. Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles (2005)

PG | 107 min | Drama

73 Metascore

A Japanese father travels to China's Yunnan province in the place of his ailing son to film a famous folk-opera star.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Ken Takakura, Kiichi Nakai, Shinobu Terajima, Ken Nakamoto

Votes: 4,731 | Gross: $0.25M

77 (6) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

38. Ocean Heaven (2010)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama

Explores the subject of parental love and autism in kids.

Director: Xiaolu Xue | Stars: Jet Li, Zhang Wen, Lun-Mei Kwei, Yuanyuan Zhu

Votes: 2,253

79 (3) 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

Blu-ray (English Subtitles)

39. Getting Home (2007)

110 min | Comedy, Drama

A black comedy about a farmer who tries to bring home the body of his friend, who died far from their town.

Director: Yang Zhang | Stars: Benshan Zhao, Qiwen Hong, Dandan Song, Degang Guo

Votes: 1,518

79 (3) Won 1 Golden Horse Award, Best Feature Film Nominee 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, Dolby Digital

DVD (English Subtitle)

40. Shanghai Triad (1995)

R | 108 min | Crime, Drama, History

A provincial boy related to a Shanghai crime family is recruited by his uncle into cosmopolitan Shanghai in the 1930s to be a servant to a ganglord's mistress.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Li Gong, Baotian Li, Xiaoxiao Wang, Xuejian Li

Votes: 4,927 | Gross: $2.30M

77 (5) Oscar Nominee 35mm, Color, 1.85:1, 4.0 Stereo (Dolby SR)

Blu-ray (HK: LPCM 2.0, English Subtitles)

41. 24 City (2008)

Not Rated | 112 min | Drama

75 Metascore

When a factory is being torn down in Chengdu, China, workers reflect on their experiences and the importance of the factory in their lives.

Director: Zhangke Jia | Stars: Jianbin Chen, Joan Chen, Liping Lü, Tao Zhao

Votes: 1,607

76 (6)

42. The World (2004)

Not Rated | 143 min | Drama

81 Metascore

An exploration on the impact of urbanization and globalization on a traditional culture.

Director: Zhangke Jia | Stars: Tao Zhao, Taishen Cheng, Jue Jing, Zhongwei Jiang

Votes: 2,853 | Gross: $0.06M

76 (6)

Blu-ray (UK: English Subtitles, Region Free)

43. Mountains May Depart (2015)

Not Rated | 126 min | Drama, Romance

79 Metascore

The life of Tao, and those close to her, is explored in three different time periods: 1999, 2014, and 2025.

Director: Zhangke Jia | Stars: Tao Zhao, Yi Zhang, Jing Dong Liang, Zijian Dong

Votes: 4,638 | Gross: $0.08M

76 (6) Won 2 Golden Horse Awards, Best Feature Film Nominee

Blu-ray (English Subtitles)

44. Monkey King: Hero Is Back (2015)

PG | 89 min | Animation, Action, Adventure