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Based on 23 Reviews
critic reviews (10)
fan reviews ( 23 )
  • 75
    Amy Biancolli San Francisco Chronicle

    This is a handsome, conventional biopic, as fluent and polished as its subject matter. show more

  • 70
    Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal

    The film celebrates artistic freedom without preaching a sermon, and often flies when Mr. Chi is on screen. When he is on stage, spinning and leaping to the strains of magnificent music, the film soars. show more

  • 63
    Steven Rea Philadelphia Inquirer

    This based-on-real-life tale of artistic aspirations and international politics is packed with more corn than an Iowa silo. show more

  • 40
    Joe Neumaier New York Daily News

    Noble but dull. show more

  • 60
    The Hollywood Reporter

    Like most films in this underdog genre, the emotional manipulation of the audience is constant and obvious. show more

  • 60
    Michelle Orange Movieline

    The degree to which they are willing to share their bodies with the world, seeming to reach out for it with each impossible extension, drawing it in with every reeling arabesque, suggests a desire for engagement that is visceral, human, and true in all the ways this film is not. show more

  • 75
    Ella Taylor NPR

    Likable as this full-hearted and uplifting movie is, though, I wish that Beresford had not fallen into the familiar trap of dividing Chinese characters into two roles: brutal, ideology-spouting apparatchiki; or parable-spouting, salt-of-the-earth proletarians, the better to show off by contrast the open society of the West. show more

  • 100
    Rex Reed New York Observer

    This first-cabin director returns to top form, with this revelatory film his best in years. More than that, Mao's Last Dancer is a masterpiece. show more

  • 75
    Rick Groen The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

    The delight of this film isn't so much in the tale as the telling. show more

  • 63
    Wesley Morris Boston Globe

    The ballets are badly filmed. The camera shoots them often from the point of view of the patrons in the auditorium or in a way that dishonors the choreography. show more

  • November 30, 2011 spstanish
    Report This User

    Brilliant choreography and phenomenal ballet! I was thoroughly transfixed!

  • December 30, 2010 bd64kcmo
    Report This User

    Someone said the Hollywood left kept it out of the mainstream theatre release. Seems the same thin happens to some of the Sherwood films like "Fireproof". I would not be a bit surprised. Perhaps if the thing happened in LA it might have gotten a bit more push. The hollywood types have a thing about "not invented here".

  • October 15, 2010 Nancy
    Report This User

    Why isn't the movie being shown in Fort Worth? I've been waiting for it for WEEKS! The book was wonderful and I want to see this movie. WAKE UP movie houses! This is a story that needs to be told. I lived in Houston when the story unfolded and Plano has it but Fort Worth doesn't?????? Whassup with that?

  • September 30, 2010 Elaine1660
    Report This User

    Saw this movie last night and love it, loved it, loved it. I didn't want it to end. This is an amazing story that stayed with me thorughtout the night. It just kept going through my mind over and over again. The dancing was just so beautiful and graceful. It is definitely a movie not to miss. And if your man does not want to see it with you because it is about a ballet dancer then, see it yourself. Don't miss this movie.

  • September 21, 2010 HHI ROCK
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    I just saw this movie today and have to say I absolutely LOVED IT. It was a great story and the acting was fantastic. I hope this little gem of a flick finds a very large word of mouth audience who will enjoy it as much as I did.

  • September 14, 2010 jarofstars
    Report This User

    This was a great movie! We loved it and like so many times the critics just didn't get what we like. Pay attention to life when the government controls it Americans, and tell all your friends to see this movie. Li 's life was a inspiration!

  • September 13, 2010 casablanca247
    Report This User

    Great Movie! One of the best I have seen this year!

  • September 10, 2010 Wolfhome
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    Best movie I have seen in a long time. You get it all. A good story, history, ballet, documentary etc. I have seen it twice in a week and will happily see it again. It is a breath of fresh air amid all the violent action films. Thank you.

  • September 07, 2010 Nat and James
    Report This User

    Best movie I have seen in a long time! Wonderful acting, cinematography, music, choreography. This true story is so moving and drives home the freedoms we have as Americans. A "must see!"

  • September 06, 2010 Pete
    Report This User

    I went to see this movie because of the user reviews & I am so glad I did. This film is a must see. I thought it was going to be about ballet, (not a big fan), but it wasn't. It was about the hardships the Lead had to go through & the misconceptions he was raised to believe about our great country. This movie had one of the best endings I have ever seen. I consider myself a thick skinned 62 Y.O. man but my eye balls were watering all over the place. Had to put my sunglasses on before the lights went on. Go see it! Bring your sunglasses if your a guy, LOL!


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