What’s in Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon – A study on Wu Xia genre from male gaze perspective in feminism film theory


Wu-Ching Tseng


feminism movie theory、male gaze、Wu Xia film、Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon


This study hopes to investigate the female images in “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon” from male gaze perspective in feminism movie theory, and then debate on the possibility of Wu Xia movie new genre. Mulvery in her “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” points out male gaze projects their illusions upon female images, which makes woman as image and man as bearer of the look. Women are always objectified, uglified or marginalized in traditional Wu Xia movies. In “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon”, however, Jen as a female, takes over of the storyline and challenges Mulvey’s standpoints on looker as controller. By ruining marriage, stealing sword, and jumping onto cliff, Jen displays the self-awakening inside females. Therefore, “Crounching Tiger Hidden Dragon” thoroughly subverts females’ subordinate images. It also shows the changes and creation of Wu Xia movie from successful great evaluation.