In The Spirit Of The Golden Flower

To The Chrysanthemum

Wait until autumn comes in 8th of September,

I, the chrysanthemum, will bloom while all the other flowers fade.

The fragrance will fill in through out Chang'An City, That’s when -

The City all wears Goldern Armor.

A poem by Huang Chao (?-884), a rebellion leader during the late Tang Dynasty, the last sentence of which is used as the Chinese title for Curse of the Golden Flower. 

Translated by FishFingers, From www.

Formerly known as The City of Golden Armor or Autumn Remembrance, Curse of the Golden Flower is an epic romance plus martial art drama directed by Zhang Yimou. Featuring Chow Yun Fat (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) and Gong Li (Raise the Red Lantern), Curse of the Golden Flower concerns the volatile balance of power between the King (Chow Yun Fat) and the Queen (Gong Li) and his three sons, which entails betrayal, deceit and passion, causing slow falling of  

The movie has historical implications to many of the Chinese viewers: the plot is loosely adapted from "Thunderstorm", one of the best known works by writer Cao Yu (1910-1996), which tells a story setting in early 20th about family betray and contending for power and money, though the screen version doesn't stay too faithful to the original, and is reset to the late Tang dynasty.

Besides, both the English and the Chinese title give a clear hint at the chosen of golden color. The Chinese one is significant as it is the last sentence from a rebellion poem “To the Chrysanthemum” by Huang Chao, a leader of an uprising of the late Tang period (the sentence literally means everyone in the city was wearing golden armor). 

In the poem, Huang Chao shows his ambition by comparing him and his army with chrysanthemum, the golden flower, which blooms in fall when all other flowers have withered (when his army come, everyone else will fall.); while in the film, chrysanthemum reveals the empress‘s determination to resist her husband’s rule, which results in large-scale battle, in a sea of blooming chrysanthemums.

Curse of the Golden Flower reunites Zhang Yimou and Gong Li whose previous collaborations changed the face of Asian cinema (Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Shanghai Triad) in the 1990's. It’s the third epic movie with martial arts genre from Zhang Yimou after Hero and House of Flying Daggers, and promises to be Zhang’s most colorful and biggest production to date, fusing high drama and romantic intrigue with the best of contemporary martial arts.