Broken Blossoms

related topics
{film, series, show}
{god, call, give}
{son, year, death}
{black, white, people}
{disease, patient, cell}
{woman, child, man}
{@card@, make, design}
{style, bgcolor, rowspan}
{country, population, people}

Broken Blossoms or The Yellow Man and the Girl is a 1919 silent film directed by D.W. Griffith It was distributed by United Artists and premiered on May 13, 1919. It stars Lillian Gish, Richard Barthelmess and Donald Crisp, and tells the story of young girl, Lucy Burrows, who is abused by her alcoholic prizefighting father, Battling Burrows, and meets Cheng Huan, a kind-hearted Chinese man who falls in love with her. The film met with critical acclaim. Currently it upholds a 100% positive rating on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes (based on 19 reviews).[1]

Contents

Plot

Cheng Huan (Richard Barthelmess) leaves his native China because he "dreams to spread the gentle message of Buddha to the Anglo-Saxon lands." His idealism fades as he is faced with the brutal reality of London’s gritty inner-city. However, his mission is finally realized in his devotion to the “broken blossom” Lucy Burrows (Lillian Gish), the beautiful but unwanted and abused daughter of boxer Battling Burrows (Donald Crisp).

After being beaten and discarded one evening by her raging father, Lucy finds sanctuary in Cheng’s home, the beautiful and exotic room above his shop. As Cheng nurses Lucy back to health, the two form a bond as two unwanted outcasts of society. All goes astray for them when Lucy’s father gets wind of his daughter's whereabouts and in a drunken rage drags her back to their home to punish her. Fearing for her life, Lucy locks herself inside a closet to escape her contemptuous father.

By the time Cheng arrives to rescue Lucy, who he so innocently adores, it is too late. Lucy’s lifeless body lies on her modest bed as Battling has a drink in the other room. As Cheng gazes at Lucy’s youthful face which, in spite of the circumstances, beams with innocence and even the slightest hint of a smile, Battling enters the room to make his escape. The two stand for a long while, exchanging spiteful glances, until Battling lunges for Cheng with a hatchet, and Cheng retaliates by shooting Burrows repeatedly with his handgun. After returning to his home with Lucy’s body, Cheng builds a shrine to Buddha and takes his own life with a knife to the stomach.

Production and style

Unlike Griffith’s more extravagant earlier works like The Birth of a Nation or Intolerance, Broken Blossoms is a small-scale film that uses controlled studio environments to create a more intimate effect.

Full article ▸

related documents
Ford Prefect (character)
Rob Reiner
George Peppard
Inside Monkey Zetterland
David Suchet
D. W. Griffith
Ron Howard
Isabelle Huppert
Apt Pupil (film)
Charles Boyer
Beagle Boys
Marty Feldman
John Thaw
Daniel Radcliffe
The Amazing Criswell
A Knight's Tale
The Emperor Jones
Alain Resnais
Esai Morales
Hans Moleman
Jessica Hynes
June Whitfield
Doodles Weaver
John Hughes (director)
Humphrey B. Bear
Silent Witness
City Lights
Raise the Red Lantern
Badlands (film)
Blue Jam