Guizi lai le (Devils on the Doorstep)
Guizi lai le (Devils on the Doorstep) (2000)

Jiang Wen directed and stars as the hapless protagonist in this incendiary, sociopolitical satire set in a Chinese hamlet during World War II's waning days. One wintry night, peasant Ma Dasan (Wen) becomes -- at gunpoint -- the… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 2000
DVD Release Date: April 19, 2005
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Critic Score: 90% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Stephen Holden
New York Times

In its dry and forceful way, it delivers the same message as Jiri Menzel's Closely Watched Trains and Danis Tanovic's No Man's Land.

Hollywood Reporter

There's a gem of an idea lurking inside this movie, but the film is burdened with an overwrought and static first hour and wild tonal fluctuation.

Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

The farcical elements seemed too pat and familiar to hold my interest, yet its diverting grim message is a good one.

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V.A. Musetto
New York Post

A wild ride that effortlessly combines devilish dark humor, slapstick comedy, extreme violence and bitter satire.

Phil Villarreal
Arizona Daily Star

The tonal shifts are jolting, and though Wen's messages are profound and thoughtfully delivered, more thorough transitions would have made the film more cohesive.

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Joe McGovern
Premiere Magazine

Rich in shadowy metaphor and as sharp as a samurai sword, Jiang Wen's Devils on the Doorstep is a wartime farce in the alternately comic and gut-wrenching style of Joseph Heller or Kurt Vonnegut.

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Dennis Lim
Village Voice

Shot in rich, shadowy black-and-white, Devils chronicles, with increasingly amused irony, the relationship between reluctant captors and befuddled captives.

Par Parekh
Film Journal International

Undeniably impressive.

Full review…
Ken Fox
TV Guide

This boisterous comedy serves up a cruel reminder of the fate of hundreds of thousands of Chinese, one which can only qualify as a terrible tragedy.

Flixster Audience Score: 95% Flixster User Reviews
Kevin M. Williams
In every truly comic moment there is perhaps some deep, deep tragedy happening at the same time, or at least that's true in this interesting WWll tale of… More
Robert Brogan
Devils on the Doorstep is a comically told tragedy. The characters and story-telling are great. It is a shame that the film was banned since it is very Chinese… More
El Hombre Invisible
An epic war film about the Chinese suffering under the control of their enemies in a Japanese occupation after the war. But guess what? It's also a comedy.… More
Jesse Ortega
I really enjoyed this movie but it has a very inconsistent tone and it definitely runs a bit too long because of it. It's got a good story however about… More