Love and Duty 戀愛與義務 (1931)

The film:

***To be updated***

Ruan Lingyu (credited as Lily Yuen) and Jin Yan (credited as Raymond King) co-star as students who fall in love, only for her father to marry her off to another man. Years later, the erstwhile lovers reunite when he saves one of her two children from drowning. Their romance rekindles, and they run away together, with tragic consequences. This epic morality tale features charismatic performances by its leads, including Ruan Lingyu playing double roles as mother and daughter – in one scene opposite herself, thanks to the magic of split-screen cinematography.

Story adapted from La symphonie des ombres, by S. Rosen Hoa

The original Chinese-English bilingual intertitles on this magnificently-restored film are some of the best of the silent era. Chinese text appearing onscreen has been translated only when an English translation is missing, or the meaning between languages differs significantly in the original title card. This copy of the film appears to be missing an intertitle introducing Ruan Lingyu.

Lian’ai yu yiwu
Director: Richard Poh (Bu Wancang)
Screenplay: Chu Shek Lin (Zhu Shilin)
Lianhua Studio (United Photoplay Service)
Year of release: 1931
152 minutes
Cast: Ruan Lingyu (Lily Yuen), Jin Yan (Raymond King), Li Ying, Liu Jiqun, Yu Juyun, Shi Juefei
Subtitles translated by Christopher Rea


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