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Cyclo

Poster for the movie "Cyclo"

Cyclo (1996)

R 123 min - Drama, Crime - 22 March 1996
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Follows a young cyclo (bicycle cab) driver on his poverty-driven descent into criminality in modern-day Ho Chi Minh City. The boy's struggles to scratch out a living for his two sisters and grandfather in the mean streets of the city lead to petty crime on behalf of a mysterious Madame from whom he rents his cyclo.

Director:  Tran Anh Hung
Writers:  Tran Anh Hung

Photos

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Storyline

Follows a young cyclo (bicycle cab) driver on his poverty-driven descent into criminality in modern-day Ho Chi Minh City. The boy's struggles to scratch out a living for his two sisters and grandfather in the mean streets of the city lead to petty crime on behalf of a mysterious Madame from whom he rents his cyclo.


Collections: Tran Anh Hung

Genres: Drama, Crime

Details

Official Website: 
Country:   Vietnam Hong Kong France
Language:  Tiếng Việt
Release Date:  22 March 1996

Box Office

Technical Specs

Runtime:  2 h 03 min

Cyclo (Xích Lô): A Glimpse into the Underbelly of Ho Chi Minh City

Cyclo (Xích Lô), a 1995 film directed by Tran Anh Hung, is a poignant exploration of the challenging lives of laborers in early 1990s Ho Chi Minh City. The film stars Lê Văn Lộc, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, and Trần Nữ Yên Khê, and is notable for its unique storytelling and visual style.

Acclaim and Recognition

The film achieved critical acclaim, winning the prestigious Golden Lion at the 52nd Venice International Film Festival. Renowned for its abstract and wordless communication, “Cyclo” captivated audiences and critics alike, with reviewer Janet Maslin praising its memorable and successful approach.

Plot Overview

The story revolves around an 18-year-old orphaned boy, a cyclo driver following in his late father’s footsteps, struggling to make a living on the bustling streets of Ho Chi Minh City. His family, including his tire-repairing grandfather, shoe-shining little sister, and market-working older sister, live a modest yet peaceful life. This tranquility is shattered when his cyclo is stolen, thrusting him into the city’s criminal underworld.

The boy’s descent into crime is mirrored by his older sister, who, under the influence of a brooding poet and gang leader, turns to prostitution. The film weaves a tale of their entanglement with crime, violence, and despair against the backdrop of a city gripped by gang unrest.

Cast and Characters

  • Lê Văn Lộc as the young cyclo driver.
  • Tony Leung Chiu Wai as the poet and gang leader.
  • Trần Nữ Yên Khê as the cyclo driver’s elder sister.
  • Nguyen Nhu Quynh as the lady running the cyclo business.

Soundtrack

The soundtrack, composed by Vietnamese Tôn-Thât Tiêt, is an integral part of “Cyclo,” enhancing its emotional depth. It includes Vietnamese folk songs and other popular tracks, contributing to the film’s authentic cultural portrayal.

Reception

“Cyclo” has been received favorably by critics and audiences, holding a 75% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a score of 76 on Metacritic, indicative of generally favorable reviews. The film stands out for its stark portrayal of life’s harsh realities in a rapidly changing Ho Chi Minh City and is celebrated for its artistic merit and profound storytelling.

Source: wikipedia