Chinese Supernaturalism: Mythic Ethnography and the Mystical Other

Kenneth Chan

in Remade in Hollywood

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print July 2009 | ISBN: 9789622090552
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882207356 | DOI:
Chinese Supernaturalism: Mythic Ethnography and the Mystical Other

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This chapter focuses on the way Chinese supernatural films pursue a kind of mythic autoethnography, where Chinese religious beliefs and superstitions receive an intensified makeover to emphasize the bizarre, the macabre, the mystical, and the inexplicable. It examines Bulletproof Monk's turn to fictitious Tibetan myths of immortality; Double Vision's cultic forms of Taoist beliefs; and The Myth's reworking of reincarnation and the semi-mythic story of the first Chinese emperor's obsession with the pill of immortality. It also analyzes the histrionics surrounding The Promise and its failure to be the film that it so anxiously aspires to be.

Keywords: supernatural films; autoethnography; religious beliefs; superstitions; Bulletproof Monk; immortality; Double Vision; The Myth; incarnation; The Promise

Chapter.  7606 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Film

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