Crossing Boundaries- Maos Last Dancer

Topics: Ballet, Mao Zedong, People's Republic of China Pages: 3 (1179 words) Published: November 12, 2011
Crossing boundaries is pushing yourself past the limits. There are many people that cross various boundaries, whether it is a physical boundary, cultural boundary or a mental boundary. This is seen in the prescribed text, the film ‘Mao’s Last Dancer’ directed by Bruce Beresford. In this we see not only the main character Li cross boundaries but also, the minor characters, Ben and Teacher Chang. Crossing boundaries also heard in the Song ‘Love Story’ by Taylor swift. This song relates back to the play “Romeo and Juliet’ by William Shakespeare. In these texts we see Romeo and Juliet both crossing boundaries. There are many reasons why people cross boundaries, perhaps to prove a point to someone, to become a better person, or maybe because of people’s beliefs and values. In Bruce Beresford’s film ‘Mao’s Last Dancer’, we see Li cross many boundaries from a very young age, up until he gets married. When Li first gets chosen to represent China to attend Madame Mao's Beijing Dance Academy, we see a soul-crushing example of communist strictures being imposed on the art. Li then moves on to America to further his ballet career after all the discipline and dedication in Beijing, under the caring wing of dance director Ben. Here we see a lot of confusion between Li and his communist Chinese background and the American world. Li is repeatedly depicted looking dumbfounded at the wonders of American life while the Chinese officials are all suitably villainous.The major boundary being crossed by Li would be the language barrier. Li finds it hard to understand and communicate with the Americans’. On several occasions he has had to ask them to repeat themselves. This is seen on many occasions at the beginning of the film. Ben; You been learning English?

Li; Yeah
Ben; Fantastic!
Li; Fantastic?
Ben; Yeah, means great, wonderful.
Li; oh fantastic!

Coming a poor communist country, Li crosses another boundary, after being disciplined and treated unfairly. “Harder! Get...
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