The Soong Sisters

Date Released:  5/1997
Production Companies:  Golden Harvest,
Fuji Television Network, Pony Canyon Inc.
Language:  Mandarin and some English
Producer:  Ng See-Yuen
Director:  Mabel Cheung
Art Director:  Eddie Ma
Cinematographer:  Arthur Wong
Music:  Kitaro &Randy Miller
Screenplay:  Alex Law
Costume Design:  Emi Wada
Edit:  Mei Fung
Category:  Drama/Historical
Country:  Hong Kong / China
Cast:  (in credit order)
Soong Ching-ling/Madam Sun .... Maggie Cheung
Soong Ai-ling/Madam Kung .... Michelle Khan/Yeoh
Soong May-ling/Madam Chiang .... Vivian Wu
Sun Yat-sen .... Winston Chao
Chiang Kai-shek .... Wu Hsing-Kuo
H.H. Kung .... Niu Zhen-Hua
Madam Soong .... Elaine Jin
Charlie Soong .... Jiang Wen
Golden Horse Award 1997:
Eddie Ma (best art direction)
Kitaro & Randy Miller (best original score)
Zeng Jing-xiang (best sound effects)
Hong Kong Film Award 1998:
Maggie Cheung (best actress)
Jiang Wen (best supporting actor)
Eddie Ma (best art direction)
Arthur Wong (best cinematography)
Kitaro & Randy Miller (best original score)
Emi Wada (best costume & make up design)
Zeng Jing-xiang (best sound effects)
Mabel Cheung (best director, nominated)
Michelle Yeoh (best supporting actress, nominated)
Elaine Jin (best supporting actress, nominated)
Alex Law (best sceenplay, nominated)
Ng See-Yuen (best picture, nominated)
The Film:
The Soong family was one of the most influential families in Chinese modern history. The legendary tale of its three famous beautiful daughters -- Ai-ling, Ching-ling, and May-ling, has been passed from generation to generation.

The movie tells the story of the three sisters, starting from their childhood (around year 1900), through the years of unrest and revolution, the second world war, the civil war... We get acquainted with their loves, their fears, their hopes, their tears, their passions, their relationships, their rises and falls...

It's a well made movie. A good combination of the life of the Soong sisters and the larger historical picture which is ever present -- and hard to ignore -- in the background.

Michelle stars as Ai-ling, the oldest of the three. She's absolutely remarkable even though this is her first non-action movie and she's not the main leading actress. What really amazes me about Michelle is that she's so convincing for any role she's in. We have seen her as a tough cop, a martial art expert, a super-nature heroine, a young teacher, a stuntwoman, a spy,... now she IS Soong Ai-ling.

** The production took place in Mainland China. Director Mabel Cheung had a very difficult time getting the film approved by the Chinese communist authorities, and was ultimately forced to cut about 20 minutes of the film.

A Historic Story::
Wesleyan College: The Soong Sisters at Wesleyan
Pictures of real Soong Sisters

( page created: 08/18/98,   last modified: 02/23/02 )