Ohmygosh! I adored this! I have already always loved the Disney version of Mulan, but this more dramatic live-action version was lovely.
I am sad that filming in certain locations despite the Chinese treatment of the Uyghurs, raised such controversy for the film. It was the locations that really created the film for me. I don’t want that to take away from how important this film is. It casts an American spotlight on the Asian population and culture. And, while initially based off a very short poem, the story shows just how highly the Chinese, and most Asian cultures, held ideas such as Honour, Respect, and Duty. These are ideas that many Americans hold loosely in their hands. But the Chinese gripped onto them so tightly. To the point that dishonouring your family was equal to exile.
But to me, the thing that I have always loved about this story, was the strength it gave its main character. Mulan, a woman whos only job in life is to be lady-like, find a good match, and maintain family honour by being obedient. That is not the way for Mulan. She rises up, despite EVERYTHING stacked against her, and proves she is just as strong, if not stronger, than any man.
(Trying very hard not to think too much about the Chinese Opera version of The Ballad of Mulan I saw long ago, in which, Mulan’s love interest perishes, and she decides to weep at his grave for the rest of her days…)
This is not “the Disney version of Mulan.” This is a Chinese movie, about a woman named Mulan. Don’t expect a sing-a-long.