The Corner

Hero: An Exchange of Views

“Mr. Derbyshire—I must protest. I am white and 23, and I have a Chinese

girlfriend/soon-to-be-fiancee. I do not find Zhang Ziyi attractive. I think

she looks juvenile (the precocious and petulant roles she plays do not

help). I think that Michelle Yeoh is a much prettier Chinese actress than

Zhang. When Crouching Tiger came out during the time I was in college, all

of my friends captured pictues of Zhang for their computer backgrounds, so I

understand you have the majority opinion on your side. I, for one, however,

do not see it. Also, I loved Hero. I will concede to most everything you

said about the movie (including the commie/nationalist message), and yet I

still loved it. I am as big a supporter of Taiwanese statehood as I know,

and yet it wasn’t enough to turn me off of this movie. Take that for what

it’s worth.”

[My reply] “Well, the fact that Hero was a box-office smash in Taiwan tells

us something, I suppose. But you are still WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! about Ziyi.

Go wash out your mouth with soap and water.”

John Derbyshire — Mr. Derbyshire is a former contributing editor of National Review.

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