In Love, with Tragedy:On the Ethical Choice in Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,Lust, Caution, and Brokeback Mountain
|關鍵字:||李安;悲劇;倫理抉擇;命運;必然性;愛情;Ang Lee;Tragedy;Ethical Choice;Fate;Necessity;Love|
My thesis attempts to study the issue encompassing Greek tragedy, ethical choice, and love in Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Lust, Caution and Brokeback Mountain. Beginning with Pushing Hands, Ang Lee’s films ingeniously reach a balance between mainstream cinema and art house cinema. His mainstream strain deals with the element of “conflicts.” From Pushing Hands to Brokeback Mountain, every of these films abide by the formula of conflicts and solutions. More than that, Ang Lee’s success in Hollywood even proves that the conflicting issue he demonstrates is not confined to time and space. He deals with fundamental issue that humankind will confront in life. The struggle, tension, and ethical choice brought about by conflicts compel people to rethink the most basic need of humankind. In light of this, such a tension can only be revealed in its extreme form as tragedy. My thesis begins with the analysis of tragicalness in Greek tragedy, and looks for the common ground between the concept of tragedy and modernity. Applying the essential traits of tragedy to these three films, Ang Lee portrays tragic characters striving under the controversial and fixed environment. Using Gabriela Basterra’s perspective of fate, Apollonian and Dionysiac forces in Nietzsche’s The Birth of Tragedy, and Aristotle’s concept of actions, Ang Lee’s characters in these three films have no place to survive while individual desire must confront collectivity. Li Mu Bai vacillates between the code in jianghu and his personal anxiety; Wang Chia Chih is torn between her duty and a collaborator with whom she cannot but fall in love; Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist, who are gay lovers, are repressed by their heterosexual society. All of them make a choice which only leads them to death while being involved in a dilemma. In the end, it is clear that the motivation behind their behaviors is love.
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