Media Asia/1987/93m/WS 1.66
| Director Stanley Kwan weaves an elegant Chinese
ghost story with interwoven strands from 1934 and 1987 Hong Kong. Kwan is a sensual
filmmaker, visually caressing his characters into graceful movement in Rouge.
Fleur is a stunner working at a Hong Kong brothel in 1934. You have to plunk down $HK200 to trace the lines of her calf or perhaps 300 to stroke an ear lobe. Chen-Pang is a prosperous merchants son who becomes infatuated with her. Fleur plays on his desires and he woos her like a virgin. Its only a matter of time and pursuit before they fall passionately in love. This is not the marriage match Chen-Pangs middle class parents had in mind; concubine yes, wife no. When they refuse to accept the relationship, Fleur influences Chen-Pang to become an actor in the Peking Opera and they set up house keeping together. Between puffs on the opium pipe their union appears as fragile as the smoke rising from the numbing fumes.
More than fifty years later
they young and beautiful Fleur shows up at a newspaper office to place an advertisement in
search of Chen-Pang. She pursues the young man who works at the newspaper office until he
agrees to help her. He and his girlfriend begin to hunt for a lead to the whereabouts of
Fleurs long-lost lover.