COLLECT WATCH TRACK RATE REVIEW APP
Manage your own movie collection and always keep it with you with our Apps. Price track movies and get price drop notifications instantly. Become a member to take full advantage of all site features.
GET STARTED

Best Blu-ray Deals

Best Blu-ray Deals, See All the Deals »
Top deals | Price drops  
 All countries United States United Kingdom Canada Germany France Spain Italy Japan
Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (Blu-ray)
$19.99
Grimm: Season Three (Blu-ray)
$39.99
Y Tu Mamá También (Blu-ray)
$19.99
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (Blu-ray)
$19.96
The Walking Dead: The Complete Fourth Season (Blu-ray)
$29.99
Tinto Brass: Maestro of Erotica Cinema (Blu-ray)
$45.34
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Blu-ray)
$74.99
Operation Petticoat (Blu-ray)
$17.98
Jumanji (Blu-ray)
$7.99
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Blu-ray)
$18.96
Chuck: The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
$66.99
Friends: The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
$110.00
The Amazing Spider-Man 3D (Blu-ray)
$14.99
The East (Blu-ray)
$6.99
Once Upon a Time: The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray)
$39.99
The Fault in Our Stars (Blu-ray)
$24.99
Breaking Bad: The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
$102.49
Wrong Turn Trilogy (Blu-ray)
$17.31
All That Heaven Allows (Blu-ray)
$22.98


Shanghai


2010 | 107 min | R | 2.39:1

Shanghai

Rating


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
7.5
5
ratings.


User reviews


No user reviews yet, post one

Movie appeal

 
Drama100%
Thriller65%
Romance55%
Mystery54%
2
fans

96
Blu-ray
collections

Country of origin


 United States

Overview Releases Preview Cast & crew Screenshots User reviews News Forum

Shanghai

 (2010)

Shanghai Preview  

5
 / 10
Preview by Brian Orndorf, January 11, 2012

It’s easier to admire “Shanghai” than it is to enjoy it. A period mystery of debatable allure, the picture is best appreciated for its visual mastery, displaying stunning set design and elaborate noir-flavored cinematography. The movie is a feast for the eyes, yet the thrill of craftsmanship doesn’t carry over to the screenplay, which labors through a tepid puzzle of international allegiances, romantic interest, and wartime chaos. The feature certainly isn’t lazy, but it’s not a good sign to walk away from “Shanghai” more hypnotized by its assembly than its narrative rumble.



In 1941, American journalist and spy Paul Soames (John Cusack) has come to Shanghai to examine growing Japanese interests in a Chinese city, finding members of numerous nations taking up residence there on the eve of WWII. Learning of the murder of friend and colleague Conner (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Paul jumps into thick of intrigue to help uncover the killer. Romancing German wives (Franka Potente) and dueling with Japanese officials (Ken Watanabe), Paul gathers clues concerning a major naval event on the horizon. However, his attention is diverted by Anna (Gong Li), the wife of influential figure Anthony (Chow Yun Fat), drawn to her beauty and connection to mysterious events involving a burgeoning resistance movement. Putting his own life on the line, Paul begins to aid Anna’s endeavors, inching closer to a potential suspect (Rinko Kikuchi) as the city erupts into panic.

Scripted by Hossein Amini (“The Wings of the Dove,” “Drive”), “Shanghai” is molded in the film noir tradition, with the movie’s primary interests holding to Paul’s investigation of Conner’s murder, using his journalistic bravado to question members of the community and piece together a pile of clues. It’s a story better with mood than revelation, placing viewers in the middle of a glamorous city caught up in concentrated global interests, with Germans, Japanese, and Americans filling the nightclubs, restaurants, and streets while the Chinese watch carefully, fearing political upheaval on the horizon. Amini’s script enjoys flirting with historical significance and foreshadowing iconic WWII events, arranging a healthy amount of characters to complicate Paul’s exploration, each with their own damaging secrets and commitments to decode.



Director Mikael Hafstrom (“1408,” “The Rite”) delivers only moderately on the excitement factor of “Shanghai,” erecting an unconvincing mystery that sluggishly moves along, ruined in part by an absurd flash-forward opening that reveals Paul’s bloodied condition in the final act. There’s a lot of business to attend to in this story, but very little of it remains compelling, carrying an almost perfunctory quality that’s serves up plot twists and double-crosses without verve. To butter up the experience, Hafstrom orders numerous shootouts and a beheading to usher in a visceral edge, yet the bursts of violence are sporadic, quickly returning to Paul’s tightly tuxedoed, quick-witted probing of local interests. The cast is capably impassioned, striving to make themselves understood in a feature of enigmatic motives, but they’re working uphill with a script and direction that can’t secure the urgency of the piece. John Woo seems a filmmaker with a fitting eye for period pageantry and epic scope to capture the tale’s density, perhaps able to infuse a little more zip to the brutality as well. There are one too many moments where Hafstrom seems out of his league.



When the drama runs out of gas, there remains an entire world to devour in “Shanghai,” which utilizes enormous sets and hundreds of extras to capture life in the city. The details are tremendous, creating a stylized recreation of the locale, with extra attention paid to striking costuming and even lit matches, which burn with a barely controllable flame, symbolizing the ambiance of the metropolis. Cinematography by Benoit Delhomme is exceptional, smoothly transitioning between noir speeds and mournful reflection, also goosing a minor play of sensuality that ignites a few scenes between Paul and Anna (as expected, it’s impossible to keep from staring at the luminous Gong Li). The technical achievements of the picture are numerous, making “Shanghai” painless to watch. It’s maintaining interest in the eroding mystery and its passive players that’s a significant challenge.

Starring: John Cusack, Li Gong, Yun-Fat Chow
Director: Mikael Håfström

» See full cast & crew




Have you seen this movie?



Rate and write your own review

 


Get Daily Blu-ray Deals



* We do not share your email and you may opt out at any time.



Top Blu-ray Deals

 


The best Blu-ray deals online. Don't miss out on these great deals.

See Today's Deals »


 Top movies


Latest Deals United States



The latest deals on Blu-ray movies
at Amazon.

Show new deals »


Trending Blu-ray Movies
1. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
2. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D
3. Toy Story of Terror!
4. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D
5. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
6. Y Tu Mamá También
7. Boardwalk Empire: The Complete Four...
8. Hercules
9. Leviathan
10. Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!
11. Tarzan
12. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
13. Once Upon a Time: The Complete Thir...
14. Muppets Most Wanted
15. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D

Trending in Theaters
1. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
2. Guardians of the Galaxy
3. The Expendables 3
4. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
5. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
6. Muppets Most Wanted
7. Let's Be Cops
8. 300: Rise of an Empire
9. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
10. The Giver
11. Noah
12. Locke
13. Divergent
14. Transformers: Age of Extinction
15. Into the Storm

Top 10 Sellers United States
1.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D
2.  The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
3.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2
4.  Cowboy Bebop: The Complete Series
5.  The Walking Dead: The Complete Four...
6.  Divergent
7.  The LEGO Movie
8.  X-Men: Days of Future Past
9.  Good Will Hunting
10.  Good Morning, Vietnam
  » See more top sellers


Top 10 Pre-orders United States
1.  The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
2.  Cowboy Bebop: The Complete Series
3.  The Walking Dead: The Complete Four...
4.  X-Men: Days of Future Past
5.  Transformers: Age of Extinction
6.  Game of Thrones: The Complete Fourt...
7.  Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
8.  Godzilla 3D
9.  How to Train Your Dragon 2
10.  The Fault in Our Stars
  » See more pre-orders


Top 10 Bargains United States
1.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D
$24.96, Save 46%
2.  The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
$19.96, Save 45%
3.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2
$18.96, Save 54%
4.  The Walking Dead: The Complete Four...
$29.99, Save 63%
5.  Divergent
$19.96, Save 50%
6.  The LEGO Movie
$17.96, Save 50%
7.  Good Will Hunting
$7.50, Save 50%
8.  Transformers: Age of Extinction
$19.99, Save 50%
9.  Y Tu Mamá También
$19.99, Save 50%
10.  Frozen
$24.96, Save 45%
  » See more deals



Most Popular Blu-ray Movie Deals


Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!

 United States


$39.95 $19.99





Grimm: Season Three

 United States


$69.98 $39.99





Y Tu Mamá También

 United States


$39.95 $19.99





Best Blu-ray Movie Deals »



This web site is not affiliated with the Blu-ray Disc Association.
All trademarks are the property of the respective trademark owners.
© 2002-2014 Blu-ray.com. All rights reserved.
Registration problems | Business/Advertising Inquiries | Privacy Policy | Legal Notices