MOVIES: Historical Chinese–The Sword and The Brocade

There are many historical Chinese movies and serials available on the Internet. Periodically, I will talk about some that I thought were interesting or fun. They will all be historical– whether dramas, mysteries,  adventures, or even fantasy. I hope you enjoy learning about them and go watch them, too.

#锦心似玉 #TheSwordandTheBrocade #WeTV

ENG SUB【The Sword and The Brocade 锦心似玉】EP01 | Starring: Wallace Chung, Seven Tan, He Hongshan, and Daddi Tang

YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WtaKlLEdLic

Premiered Feb 28, 2021

Captions in English & Chinese

Set in the Ming Dynasty

The Sword and The Brocade is a Chinese historical serial set in the Ming Dynasty. The costuming and setting are extravagant, as befitting the characters’ upper class status. Definitely, a feast for the eyes.

The story takes place in an extended family including a matriarch, her two sons and their families. The older son, General Xu Lingyi carries the responsibility of protecting the Xu name and ensuring its future. He is married to a wife and two concubines and has two young sons. After his first wife dies, he marries her younger step-sister, Luo Shiyiniang.

The theme of each episode is the growing love and respect between Lingyi and Shiyi in spite of their union being an arranged marriage. Shiyi was chosen as a wife for Lingyi because—after his first wife died—the matriarch wanted someone to care for Lingyi’s son. However, the matriarch herself and all of the women in the family were biased against Shiyi due to her drive for independence and her low status as a concubine’s daughter. Eventually, through consistent optimism, loyalty to the Xu family, and strength of character, Shiyi earns her place in the family.

This series is about how an extended family and its internal relationships affect each of its members in different and dramatic ways. Its about finding love after entering an arranged marriage. And, I believe, its about gender roles: how they can be stifling and crippling or open to change.

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