Hai shi shen lou (1987) - full transcript

Set in 1930s. Photographer Tang sees a spectacular mirage in desert. He also sees a beautiful woman in the scene. When Tang returns home, he can not forget the woman. So he and his friend go back to the desert to look for the woman.

A group of Russian refugees from
the October Revolution...

fled across the border into China and
became robbers on the Silk Road...

tuming the route into
a hazardous one...

Gansu Province / Jiuquan /
Red-Sand River

Water, water!

- Thanks.
- Here.

I see you have a Wei tribe scarf.

That's fight.
Had this since I was a baby.

Oh! Well, have a good trip.

Hey, give me some water!

- The bandits have been
rampant in this area. - Right.

But things are better now...

The merchants have joined
together to fonn a team.

They jointly pay and ensure
security for the whole group.

It's better than losing everything.

Those white Russians
are a real pain...

Life in Russia is hard, so they've
come to China to plunder.

We should do something,
drive them out of our country.

Easier said than done. Those bandits
are all ex-anny men...

They're anned and nobody knows
where they hide out. Let's go.

- Those bandits really are quite a bother!
- They are beasts.

Keep moving.

The bandits!

The guns!

Get the guns out, quickly!


Let's get out of here!

Let's go and see to the injured.

Give me some water over here!

Come here!
Give him some water.

Look at the sky!
What is it?

Come on, look!
A light!

Look! What is it?

It's beautiful!

- It must be God.
- It's a woman.

It's beautiful...

- Beautiful! - I've never
seen anything like it.

- What is it? - It's fading...
It disappeared!

Did you see it?
It was beautiful...

I've never seen anything
like it...

What was it?


Please come in.

I recently took these pictures...

Very nice indeed.

Well I never!

Very good,
really professional.

Tong, your last shoot was very good.
It was well received.

I want to publish a new book.

- I was thinking we could call it...
- I quit. - What?!

I have something I must
do for myself.

What is it?

I'm going to a far-away place...

to find someone.

- Mr. Tong, good to see you.
- Hi, how are you?

- I'm here to see Mao.
- He's inside. - Thanks.

Mao, I'm here!

Look at this photo.

Beautiful! Your mothef?

I took this during a mirage.

Who is she?
I want to find her.

Tong, you're a great rider.
You could be the best in China.

Riding is my greatest love,
but I'm fat...

so I have to settle for being a groom.
What's so hard about being a jockey?

Just lose, when ordered to do so,
and win, when ordered to do so.

What a miserable life!

It must be better than wandering around
with a camera in remote places.

Haven't you had enough of hardships?

- I've decided to quit.
- Oh? Why?

I'm going to find her.

My God, you do know what
a mirage is?!

- Of course.
- Glad to hear it! - Mao...

It's an image produced by layers
of hot air. It might not even exist.

Why not'?
The photo shows her cleafly.

Well, it may be somewhere far away.

You know, I never change my mind
once it's made up.

I know your personality...

You've liked potatoes since childhood.

I told you it may cause gas,
but you never listen.

I'm not going solely for
the sake of finding her...

but for this, too.

I've often wondered why that scarf
meant so much to you.

I was wrapped in this when
I was sent to an orphanage.

A sick old man from the
Wei tribe brought me to it...

and he died before my
background was disclosed.

Tong, you'll be bored
if you go alone.

Without a companion,
you'll be lonely.


- You mean you're coming along?
- Sure, we 're brothers from the orphanage.

We share prosperity,
and we share adversity.

Tong, where do we start from?

Let's contact some minority tribes,
to find out which she's from.

- I have a friend who may be able to help.
- Let's go, then.

- Wait. - What?
- I must spruce myself up first!


Just tum that comer.

Help yourselves.

Boamachi Nelson Abibola Paladine Aisha!

What a long name!

- Mao!
- I haven't finished yet!

- Mao, it's been a long time.
- How are you? You put on weight.

I need your help with something.

Let me introduce you to
my friend, Tong 'Fng-hsin.

- How do you do? - How are you, uncle?
I didn't catch your name.

Boamachi Nelson Abibola Paladine Aisha.

- That's his full name.
- Just call me Aisha.

Give me it.

Aisha, we 're looking for the
gifl in this photo.

I don't know her.
Who is she?

Uncle, I took it purely by chance.

Can you detennine what tribe
she's from by her clothes?

I have no idea.

She doesn't look like a Ham...

You could ask Annetta.

Who's Annetta?

She's really pretty!

Come and sit here, please.

- Annetta. - Yes?
- Number five's bill, please!

Mr. Tong, sit down, please.

- I need your help. Look at
this photo. - Sony, I'm busy.

- Do me a favour.
-We||, OK...


- She's not a Wei.
- What tribe is she from then?

Perhaps one in the Silk Road area,
near the Great Wall.

Good, thank you!

Tong, she knows...

- Be ourguide, OK?
- I'm busy now. Some other time.

Please be our guide.
We can be together every clay.

It's only my conjecture; the photo
alone doesn't prove much.

You're always right in yourjudgement.
Take us there.

Stop bothering me, will you?

Fatty, don't bother her.
Leave her alone.

Get lost!

Get off ear1y and I'll take you out...

Sony, I'm too busy.

- Don't be a bitch. My car's outside.
- Behave yourself!

What do you mean?

Have I acted rudely'?
I'm here, and so's my car.

Stop playing hard to get.
Let's go.

Let go of me!

What are you doing?

What do you want?
Do you know who I am?

No, and I don't care.

- Forget it, Mao.
- Don't you know who I am? I'm Ho!

-And I'm Poon!
- Get him!


Mao, are you OK?

Miss, I'm Mao's friend.
You'd better come with us.

Annetta, go with them.
You can't stay here in Shang-hai now.

Mao, take care of Annetta!

OK, don't wowy.

Get him!

Catch the bastard!


Hold on tight...
Not too tight!

Mao, watch out!

- Mao, what are you doing?
- Go to hell!

Get on!

- Sony! - What are you doing?
- Forget it, get on the bike!

Mao, go!

They won't get away with this!
Call the police to get them!

The train's coming. Get up.
Go welcome them.

Right on time!

- Uncle Kwong!
- Easy...

- Hi, good to see you
- How are you?

- Have you got a camel and a horse?
- Yes. - Who are they?

- Are you a Han'?
- That's fight. - Me, too.

You travelled here by train...

- Here, we ride camels.
-Yes, we ride camels!

Camels are big, strong and calm.

- Yes, they are.
- What about their food'?

- It will be less, and so will
the charge. - Not right.

One camel equals two cars.
I Should charge double!

-Yes, double.
- Friend, be reasonable.

- Let me have a look at your camels.
- We also need three horses.

We can supply them.
Let's go.

- Where's your luggage, gentlemen?
- On the train.

We'll get them for you.

Tong, it's like you were moving house!

So many cases...

Well, that way I'm always prepared.
Come on, let's go.

Tum it...
Very nice.

It'll be ready soon.

My father came here as a merchant.

He brought me here when
I was about 15...

But he was killed by bandits.

- Sony to hear that.
- Never mind...

You might belong to the
Wei tribe, then?

I'm fascinated by the Northwest...

- Maybe because it's in my blood.
-You could be right.

Are you cold?

Have a bowl of hot tea.

Tong 'Fng-hsin's nice;
he's very friendly.

Of course - I only mix with
the best, you know!

- What family does he have?
- We 're orphans.

He doesn't even have a girifriend.

Come on, let's dance.

Annetta's back!

- Annetta's back!
- Really?

- It really is her!
- Let's go and see.

Annetta, you're pretty!

How tall you've got!

- Uncle, where's my dad?
- At home.

- Welcome. - How are you?
- Please come in.

How come they speak our dialect?

They leamt it while doing business
with the traders.

Let's go.


. My ma“
_ “am!


Thank God you're back.

Have you adapted to city life?
lsn't it better to be at home?

Dad, I've brought two
guests with me.

- Have you? Let's go and greet them.
- I'll introduce you.

Cleariy, a better tomorrow awaits us.
We all know that it does.

Let's enjoy ourselves with dancing.
We'll do better tomorrow.

We'll be more proud of tomorrow.
We'll do better tomorrow.

Come on, don't be shy.

Where are you going?
Go on back!

Mao, go and dance.

- Compete with him.
- I don't want to.

I'll go, if you won't.


Mao, don't let the opportunity
pass you by.

Mao, come on!

Mao, come on!

All right then!

Cut the horses' saddle-straps.

In today's contest,
the aim is to catch the goat...

and make for the stage.

The first to get up there, wins.

This competition will promote

Faster, Bartok, faster!

Oh no!

The horses' saddle-straps
have been out.

- Shall we infonn the village chief?
- Yes.

Watch out!

Catch him!

- Who's that?
- I don't know.

Who put you up to this'?
Speak up, or I'll kill you!

- What? - Mao, his mouth's full!

It was the General -
he told me to make trouble,

to stop your rider from winning,
and stop you joining the alliance.

I'm innocent! Let me go.
I'm innocent, honest!

Ladies and gentlemen,
calm down!

Brethren, we've decided to
defer the result...

Someone's against us joining forces,
so they tried sabotage...

to min the alliance.
But we still have a winner!


Sony. If it weren't for us,
this wouldn't have happened...

Mr. Tong, don't won? about it.

We should thank you on
behalf of everyone...

We thank you both sincerely.

As I promised, I'll give my
white horse Windchaser to...

the winner of this contest today.

Furthennore, my daughter...

- Chief, I...
- Please accept my offer.

We'll be offended if you tum us down.

I'll accept with pleasure, then.
I'll take the horse...

- But I have no plans for marriage right now.
- Never mind, just take the horse.

Hey, a toast!

Tong, you really are an okay guy.
Come on, have a drink with me.

We'll be good friends...

- Are you OK?
- Goddamn horse!

Sure is a handful...

Very good!

What's going on?

- Go on! Great!
- He can't tame that horse.

He'll never ride it.

Tong! Be careful, he has
a devilish temperament!

- Good! You're great!
- Fantastic! Congratulations.


Can we talk?

Do you think it's worth all
this trouble?

Sometimes, there's a big difference
between ideals and real life.

That difference intrigues me.
I want to experience both.

- Isn't there a chance you'll be disappointed'?
- True, but I won't give up without trying.

To get the best photos, a photographer
must spare no time or effort.

Even if that means risking his life.

The rainbow, the sunset and the desert...

are they not good enough
subjects for you?

But there's more than
one roll of film...

one scene alone can't satisfy
the mind's eye.

Why not let the pictures show the
difference between ideals and reality?

Wouldn't you agree?

Maybe you're right.
I yeamed to see the city...

but it didn't tum out to be
what I expected.

I'm not complaining about life there,
but I just couldn't get used to it.

So it didn't suit you?
But me...

I still want to experience a lot more.

So you're putting reality aside
to chase rainbows?

I'm serious.

Please excuse me.
I'm backing out.

I'm not going to take you there.

I can't take my love to
search for someone else.

I understand...

I won't push you.

- Are you ready? - Yes.
- Fan, are you ready? - I'm ready.

- Got everything?
-Yes. -We||, let's go.

Tong, where's Annetta?

- She's not coming with us
any longer. - Why?

Mr. Tong, Mr. Mao...
Sony for the poor display of hospitality.

- You treated us just fine.
- Allow us to see you off.

- Have a pleasant voyage.
- Chief, where's Annetta?

Our guests are leaving,
Where is she?

- She's really rude...
- Thanks for your kind hospitality.

It's getting on;
we must get going.

Fan, let's get going!

Let's see them off.

Come on, let's move.

- Madam, have you seen Annetta?
- No.

Tong 'Fng-hsin!


Tong 'Fng-hsin!

Come back here!

Tong 'Fng-hsin,
I want a word with you!

- Sony, I forgot to say goodbye.
- Nonsense!

Well, why did you upset
my Annetta?

- I didn't. Don't get me wrong.
- You broke her heart!

You insisted on leaving and she's
wept the whole day long!

There's nothing between us.

Get down, I'll fight with you!

We 're all friends here,
don't let's fight.

- Do you know you've disgraced me?
- Get lost!

Are you alright?
Are you hurt? Sony...

Fan, are you OK?


Bartok, s0n'y. Keep calm...
Let's not fight...

Get away from me!

Bartok, I'm waming you...

Break it up!
Stop it!

There's no need to fight!
Let's talk it over.

What are you doing?
Let go!

You've forsaken a nice gin like her!
lsn't she good enough for you'?!

Love's a two-way affair.

I know your feelings for her,
you love her, but she doesn't...

Because she's blinded by
love for you!

Get away!

- The Chief is coming. - Stop!
- What's the matte-f?

Bartok, don't treat a guest that way!

Bartok, apologise.

I'm truly sony.
Bartok! Bartok!

- Fan, have you ever been
through this road? - No...

but if we catch up with the traders' alliance,
by tomorrow moming we'll be OK.



Anything wrong?

No, I'm fine.

Tong, we won't get anywhere
if we go on like this.

Let's go back.
We 're tired.

Mao, that's not like you.
Why so pessimistic?

I'm not.

It's just that...

You're never satisfied with
what you have.

What do you mean?

Go back.

Annetta's waiting for you.

- Mao...
- Why are you so dumb?

Maybe you've never been in love...

You don't know the value
of true love...

and the anguish when you
lose a loved one.

- You don't understand me.
- No, I don't!

- Why are you doing this to Annetta?!
- You think I have no heart?

- You didn't show any emotions!
- You think I feel good about it?

- But you tumed her down coldly!
- I have my reasons...

- You're looking for your dream gifl!
- If I 'cl accepted her, how would you feel?


We 're orphans:
we both need love.

How can I be truly happy,
if my happiness causes you pain'?

There are three of us...

and one of us must lose.

I won't regret it...

Love doesn't mean possession.

All I want is to see her happy.

What's going on?!

- Bandits!
- Take cover!

- Tong, let's get out of here!
- Come on.


Fan, let's go!

Stay there!

I guess we 're outnumbered!

Come on.

Get out there.

As a rule, we always kill those
who resist us...

but we admire brave warriors,
and you're cleariy one such.

Our chief will give you a chance...

If you can beat our number
one warrior...

you may leave with your men,

If you should lose,
then you will all be killed.

So where is he,
this number one warriof?

Our chief is the number
one warrior.

OK, untie him.


You - come on!

He's really nimble!

We checked his luggage;
he has nothing of value...

except for the white horse.

None of us could get the
saddle off him.

I'm afraid the raid today was
a waste of time.

It was disrupted by those men.
They mined it.

- Are they bringing him here?
- I gave them your orders.

We know nothing about him,
yet he has that picture of you.

We'd better kill him.

- I make the decisions...
- Chief.

Here's the prisoner.

What's your name?

Tong 'Fng-hsin.

I'm Gaza Nova,
the leader here.

You're very brave..

My sword has never failed me...
it's an invincible sword...

yet you defeated me.

My men say you're not a traitor,

that you're searching for someone...

Someone... like this.

That's right...

but I never guessed she
was a bandit chief!

Tell me something...
How did you get this?

I took it during a mirage.

Oh? Very interesting...

It's hard to believe I would
appear in a mirage.

Why did you want to find me?

Well, tell me when you 're
ready, then.

Take care of him.

- Take him away.
- Right.

- I had to teach him a lesson.
- Serves him right!


- Mao!
- Tong! You OK? - I'm OK.

Just hang in there.
I'll get you out.

Be careful.

Look! Get him!

Hey! Who's that?

Stop him!

Don't let him escape!
Get him!

Don't shoot -
you might hit our own men!

_ Mao!

Tong, we 're outnumbered!
Let's split up!

OK! See you later!

Don't shoot that,
use the artillery!



Ready... Fire!

Tong, Tong!

Go and take a look!

He must be dead for sure.

- Come on, let's go.
-Yeah, come on.


Don't fire,
mind the Chief!

Tong 'fing-hsin, don't run!

I'll get you!

Tong 'Fng-hsin, you can't escape!

Don't make me kill you.

You can't kill me.

Beast! I'll butcher you!

If you kill him,
we'll both die here...

Annetta, Annetta!

What's happened?

Help me lift him.

I never thought we'd both die
here in the desert.

We won't.
We'll make it in two days.

We can't, without water.

I will...

Today, I'll drink the horse's blood...

Tomorrow, I'll drink yours!

Dorflt, emu!

Don't, I beg you!
Don't kill him!

Dorflt, emu!

No! We need him! No!

Get up! Swine!

Drink my blood...

I can't walk any further.

Well, I'll grant yourwish, then...

Tracking him down like that was stupid.
You've been gone for two days.

Don't forget, you're our leader.

Blame it on your incompetence.

So many of you, yet you couldn't
catch two fugitives.

We could have got them.

It was just that we didn't want to
hurt you; we could have killed Tong.

So you're blaming it on me?

How many men have you lost...

in the last few missions,
to say nothing of those injured?

We should have killed Tong
straight away.

He foiled our mission to
rob that camel train...

and he injured many of our men.

I'll make him pay!
I'll kill him!


I'm the leader-
I give the orders, not you!

You're protecting him.
Are you in love with him?

I won't tolerate any interference.

Get out!

Gaza Nova...

We took you as our leader out of
respect for your father Androv only.


If you step out of line,
we can replace you.

- Leave us, all of you.
- Yes.

How are you?
Are you recovered?

Despite what's happened,
I like your stubbom character.

Stay here...
and keep me company.

Thank you for your good intentions...
but that's not possible.

Didn't you come all that way
just to find me?


But I'm disappointed with you.

I'm the Queen of the Silk Road.
Am I not worthy of you?

I have power and riches,
envied by all.

I have a beautiful face,
men desire my body...

intelligence, wealth and power.

But you have no humanity!

You can't have everything,
just because you own the Silk Road.

You're a mirage!

You're right...

I've found what I sought...

but I'm disillusioned.
She's a cold-blooded animal!

You Pig!

It's pointless to talk further.

Tong 'Fng-hsin...

I'll give you a few days to decide.

I'm sure you'll make a wise choice...

But don't think I won't kill you!


- Take him away.
- Yes.

Tong was kept prisoner there.

As soon as your father arrives,
we'll rescue him then.

- What happened?
- Many men are coming!

To your posts!
Close the gates!

To the fowvard posts.

- You two, man the watchtower.
-Yes. - Come with me. -Yes.

Follow me!

- Help me move the ammo.
- You go ahead first.

Let's go.

Hey, you! Quick!
Give us the guns!

No more guns,
just one hand-grenade!

- Mao, Mao!
- Fan. - Over here!

- Untie us, please.
- Cut them down.

Go and help Tong.

Fan, catch!

Fan, take care of Annetta.

Fan, watch out!


Let's attack on both sides.
Follow me!

Uncle, I'll go over there.
Let's go, come on!

Follow me,
we'll stop them!

Shoot! Shoot!

The mortar fire's too heavy!
Let's go!

Here, set up the mortar here.


Quick, let's go!


Tong! lsn't she the gifl
you were looking fof?!



Tong, get out of here!
I'm going to blow the place to hell!


We have to go!

It's going to blow!

Our hearts bum like flames...

Those flames kindle your love...

And even in the harshest winter,
they can melt the snows of '|'|an Shan.