Monday, October 03, 2011

Looking into the Back Mirror: "If I Were For Real"

If I were for real, is a 1981 Taiwanese movie (including Hong Kong teams) that was censored in Hong Kong when it was still a British crown colony, because it was deemed too critical about the privileged life of the happy few of party officials.

Li Hsiao-chang (played by Alan Tam) tries to face the challenges in his life with ingenuity. And he has to, since he made his girl friend pregnant. In fact the movie is a kind of Chinese version of the Being There (1971), Jerzy Kosinski's masterpiece. Interestingly, the melody of "Like a virgin", played by an organ you can hear at end of part I and beginning of part II. Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly composed the song in 1983, which launched Madonna's career. Maybe this music has been put under the video later.

To placate his future father in law he wants to buy a bottle of Mao Tai wine 茅台酒. But he cannot afford the needed twelve "dollar" fifty.

The liquor sales man said sarcastically:
"Just what I thought. That is what Nixon drank. Prime Minister Tanaka too. It's not for you."

Then Li ask what the cooking wine costs. Answer: "One twenty."
 "I can afford that. Now an empty bottle of Mao Tai, a red candle."
The liquor sales man nods and gives a sardonic smile.
Later you see Li putting the cooking wine into the empty Mao Tai bottle.

Here is Part II: In the beginning you can hear the melody of "Like a virgin" and fast forwarding to minute 3 you can watch the liquor scene.

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