Pushing Hands is a film directed by Ang Lee. Released in 1992, it was his first feature film. The story is about an elderly Chinese t'ai chi ch'uan teacher and grandfather who emigrates from Beijing to live with his son, American daughter-in-law, and grandson in a New York City suburb. The grandfather is increasingly distanced from the family as a "fish out of water" in Western culture. The film shows the contrast between traditional Chinese ideas of Confucian relationships within a family and the much more informal Western emphasis on the individual. The friction in the family caused by these differing expectations eventually leads to the grandfather moving out of the family home (something very alien to traditional expectations), and in the process he learns lessons (some comical, some poignant) about how he must adapt to his new surroundings before he comes to terms with his new life. More here.
The Wedding Banquet is a 1993 film about a gay Taiwanese immigrant man who marries a mainland Chinese woman to placate his parents and get her a green card. His plan backfires when his parents arrive in the United States to plan his wedding banquet.The film was directed by Ang Lee and stars Winston Chao, May Chin, Ah Lei Gua, Sihung Lung, and Mitchell Lichtenstein. The Wedding Banquet is the first of three movies that Ang Lee would make about gay characters; the second is Brokeback Mountain and the third being Taking Woodstock. The film is a co-production between Taiwan and the United States. More Here.
Eat Drink Man Woman is a 1994 Taiwanese film directed by Ang Lee and starring Sihung Lung, Yu-wen Wang, Chien-lien Wu, and Kuei-mei Yang. Many of the cast members had starred in Ang Lee's previous film, The Wedding Banquet, with Sihung Lung and Ah Lei Gua once more playing central elderly figures, and Winston Chao. The film was released on August 3, 1994. The film was a critical success. In 1994, the film received the Asia Pacific Film Festival Award for Best Film, and in 1995 it received an Academy Award Nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. The film inspired the 2001 remake Tortilla Soup. More here.
Sense and Sensibility is a 1995 British period drama film directed by Taiwanese-American director Ang Lee and based on Jane Austen's 1811 novel of the same name. Emma Thompson wrote the script and stars as Elinor Dashwood, while Kate Winslet plays Elinor's sister Marianne. Actors Hugh Grant and Alan Rickman play their respective suitors. Producer Lindsay Doran, a longtime admirer of Austen's novel, hired Thompson to write the screenplay. The actress spent four years penning numerous revisions, working on the script between other films as well as into production of the film itself. Doran found studios nervous that Thompson was the credited writer, but Columbia Pictures eventually agreed to act as the film's producer. Though initially intending for another actress to portray Elinor, Thompson was persuaded to undertake the part herself, despite the disparity with her character's age. The film garnered overwhelmingly positive reviews upon release and received many awards and nominations, including three awards and eleven nominations at the 1995 British Academy Film Awards. The film received seven Academy Awards nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director for Ang Lee. Emma Thompson received two nominations, for Best Actress and Best Adapted Screenplay, winning the latter. As of 2012, Thompson remains the only person to have won both acting and writing awards at the Academy Awards, as she previously won the Best Actress award in 1992 for Howards End. Sense and Sensibility contributed to a resurgence in popularity for Austen's work, and led to many more film and television adaptations in the following years. More here.
The Ice Storm is a 1997 drama film directed by Ang Lee, based on the 1994 novel of the same name by Rick Moody. The film features an ensemble cast of Kevin Kline, Joan Allen, Tobey Maguire, Christina Ricci, Elijah Wood, and Sigourney Weaver. Set during Thanksgiving 1973, The Ice Storm is about two dysfunctional New Canaan, Connecticut families who are trying to deal with tumultuous political and social changes of the early 1970s, and their escapism through alcohol, adultery, and sexual experimentation. Upon the film's opening in the United States on October 31, 1997, its release was limited and grossed only US$8 million on a budget of US$18 million, making it a box office flop. A new special two-disc DVD set was also released as a part of the Criterion Collection on March 18, 2008. More here.
Ride with the Devil is a 1999 Revisionist Western film directed by Ang Lee. The storyline was conceived from a screenplay written by James Schamus, based on a book entitled Woe to Live On, by author Daniel Woodrell. The events portrayed in the novel and movie take place in Missouri, amidst escalating guerrilla warfare at the onset of the American Civil War. Within the film, a loose dramatization of the Lawrence Massacre is depicted. Incorporated in the plot is the character of Jake Roedel, played by actor Tobey Maguire. Roedel, a Southern militiaman, joins a group of marauders known as the Bushwhackers. The gang attempt to disrupt and marginalize the political activities of Northern Jayhawkers allied with Union soldiers. The ensemble cast also features Skeet Ulrich, Jeffrey Wright, Jonathan Brandis, James Caviezel and musician Jewel. The film was a co-production between the motion picture studios of Universal Pictures and Good Machine. Theatrically, it was commercially distributed by the USA Films division of Universal Pictures. In 2010, The Criterion Collection released a restored high-definition digital transfer of the film for the home media market. Ride with the Devil explores politics, violence and war. Following its limited release in theaters, the film failed to garner any award nominations for its acting or production merits from accredited film organizations. On November 23, 1999, the original motion picture soundtrack was released by the Atlantic Records label. The film score was composed and orchestrated by Mychael Danna and Nicholas Dodd. Singer songwriter Jewel also contributed a musical track to the score from her second studio album Spirit. Principal photography for the film project began on March 25, 1998. Ride with the Devil premiered in theaters nationwide in the United States on November 26, 1999 grossing $635,096 in domestic ticket receipts. Taking into account its $38 million budget costs, the film was considered a major box office flop. However, preceding its initial screening in cinemas, the film was generally met with positive critical reviews. With its initial foray into the home video rental market; the widescreen DVD edition of the film featuring the theatrical trailer, scene selections, and production notes, among other highlights, was released in the United States on July 18, 2000. More here.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is a 2000 wuxia film. An American-Chinese-Hong Kong-Taiwanese co-production, the film was directed by Ang Lee and featured an international cast of ethnic Chinese actors, including Chow Yun-Fat, Michelle Yeoh, Zhang Ziyi, and Chang Chen. The film was based on the fourth novel in a pentalogy, known in China as the Crane Iron Pentalogy, by wuxia novelist Wang Dulu. The martial arts and action sequences were choreographed by Yuen Wo Ping. Made on a mere US$17 million budget, with dialogue in Mandarin, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon became a surprise international success, grossing $213.5 million. It grossed US$128 million in the United States, becoming the highest-grossing foreign-language film in American history. It has won over 40 awards. The film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (Taiwan) and three other Academy Awards, and was nominated for six other Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The film also won four BAFTAs and two Golden Globe Awards, one for Best Foreign Film. Along with its awards success, Crouching Tiger continues to be hailed as one of the greatest and most influential foreign language films in the United States, especially coming out of China. It has been praised for its martial arts sequences, story, and cinematography. More here.
Hulk (also known as The Hulk) is a 2003 American superhero film based on the fictional Marvel Comics character of the same name. Ang Lee directed the film, which stars Eric Bana as Dr. Bruce Banner, as well as Jennifer Connelly, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas, and Nick Nolte. The film explores the origins of the Hulk, which is partially attributed to Banner's father's experiments on himself, and on his son. Development for the film started as far back as 1990. The film was at one point to be directed by Joe Johnston and then Jonathan Hensleigh. More scripts had been written by Hensleigh, John Turman, Michael France, Zak Penn, J. J. Abrams, Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, Michael Tolkin, and David Hayter before Ang Lee and James Schamus' involvement. Hulk was shot mostly in California, primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area. The film grossed over $245 million worldwide, higher than its $137 million budget, but still considered somewhat of a disappointment. The film received mixed to very positive reviews from film critics. Many praised the writing, acting, character development of the film, and the music score by Danny Elfman, but criticized the character origins differing from the comics and the dark, depressing story plot, making it in comparison to the film by Christopher Nolan, The Dark Knight. Producer Avi Arad called the film a "windfall" for Marvel at the box office, and that Hulk's merchandising was successful enough to make a sequel. This eventually led to rebooting with The Incredible Hulk (2008), which is also viewed as a stand-alone sequel as much of the plot of The Incredible Hulk is continuous of Hulk. More here.
Brokeback Mountain is a 2005 romantic drama film directed by Ang Lee. It is a film adaptation of the 1997 short story of the same name by Annie Proulx with the screenplay written by Diana Ossana and Larry McMurtry. The film stars Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal, Anne Hathaway and Michelle Williams and depicts the complex romantic and sexual relationship between two men in the American West from 1963 to 1983. Brokeback Mountain won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and was honored with Best Picture and Best Director accolades from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, Golden Globe Awards, Producers Guild of America, Critics Choice Awards, and Independent Spirit Awards among many other organizations and festivals. Brokeback Mountain was nominated for eight Academy Awards, the most nominations at the 78th Academy Awards, where it won three: Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Score. The film was widely considered to be a front runner for the Academy Award for Best Picture, but lost to Crash. Brokeback Mountain ranks 11th among the highest-grossing romance films of all time. More here.
Lust, Caution is an 2007 espionage thriller film directed by Ang Lee, based on the novella of the same name published in 1979 by Chinese author Eileen Chang. The story is mostly set in Hong Kong in 1938 and in Shanghai in 1942, when it was occupied by the Imperial Japanese Army and ruled by the puppet government led by Wang Jingwei. It depicts a group of Chinese university students from the Lingnan University who plot to assassinate a high-ranking special agent and recruiter of the puppet government using an attractive young woman to lure him into a trap. With this film, Lee won for the second time the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival, the first being with Brokeback Mountain. The film adaptation and the story are loosely based on events that took place during the Japanese occupation of Shanghai. The film's explicit sex scenes resulted in the film being rated NC-17 in the United States. More here.
Taking Woodstock is a 2009 American comedy-drama film about the Woodstock Festival of 1969, directed by Ang Lee. The screenplay by James Schamus is based on the memoir Taking Woodstock: A True Story of a Riot, a Concert, and a Life by Elliot Tiber and Tom Monte. The film premiered at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, and opened in New York and Los Angeles on August 26, 2009, before its wide theatrical release two days later. More here.
Life of Pi is an upcoming 3D adventure film based on the 2001 novel of the same name by Yann Martel. The film is directed by Ang Lee based on an adapted screenplay by David Magee. Suraj Sharma will play Pi. Life of Pi is scheduled to be released on November 21, 2012. More here.