Big Shot's Funeral
Orlando Jones's film viewing habits took an unexpected turn when she found a copy of Big Shot's Funeral in a video store. In English and Chinese, Feng Xiaogang's film is light - witty and deliciously clever - a satire on the lust for money. It is he sui pian (a New Year - greeting movie). She screens it for her students who have been writing essays on The Last Emperor, the globalisation of the film industry and its effects on culture(s).
"This is the story of what happens when a famous American director (Donald Sutherland) travels to China to film a historical epic about the last emperor of the Qing Dynasty." 
Orlando Jones had already exhausted the best of the History of Star Cross'd Lovers on Film - or so she thought. Perhaps "for the time being" was more appropriate. Later, she uncovered Isabelle Huppert's performance as La Pianiste (The Piano Teacher). The pornography consuming music Professor's relationship with the (inevitably) gorgeous student (Benoit Magimel) was doomed, it seemed, before he (the Schubert playing student) even appeared on screen. Orlando Jones considered writing a course on Amorous Catastrophes on Film. To The Pianiste, she added the strangely beautiful Japanese film, The Isle. Despite the mesmerising location and the tranquillity of the scene - a silent, serene, mist shrouded lake dotted with colourful, floating, wooden (fishing) cabins - the amorous film relationship was bound to be a disaster, a catastrophe of already damaged characters. It is not the "damage" from which the characters suffer that compels her, but the eccentricity of the character's "damage." One Sunday in early May however, Orlando Jones discovered, for her private film collection, gold in the electronics market. That day she acquired Ang Lee's earlier Eat Drink Man Woman; Ethan and Joel Coen's The Man Who Wasn't There; Shohei Imamura's gently eccentric Warm Water Under a Red Bridge (with English subtitles); David Lynch's narrative nightmare Mulholland Drive; Sally Potter's Orlando (by accident - it was incorrectly packaged as something else); Catherine Breillat's A Ma Soeur and the painful to watch Monster's Ball. In a frivolous moment, she considered staging a Billy Bob Thornton Film Festival. Later, she found Giuseppe Tornatore's Cinema Paradiso. Happiness, it seemed, was possible.
She wished that there was a temple where she could burn incense for film pirates.
Orlando Jones proceeded with her plans to move closer to Shanghai although she suspected that her desire to be seduced by Shanghai was coloured by novels and films set in Shanghai in the 1920s and 30s. "Perhaps I am a romantic at last," she mused, in spite of Jin Bo's assertion that nostalgia for the 30s and 40s was also widespread among Shanghai locals. 
Orlando Jones favoured (later) moving to a small(ish) country in Central Europe - Poland or Hungary perhaps. She yearned for small cities with medieval architecture and lots of snow. She dreamed (in odd moments) of rye bread and cheese and champagne and black tea (impossibilities in Jinzhou). In other odd moments she already missed the smell of sunflower seeds, freshly roasted by a street vendor, and the exquisite taste of fresh lychees.
Orlando Jones discovered a small lump behind her earlobe. She also discovered another video store further down Hangzhou Road (past the watermelon and lychee sellers) with Wayne Wang films and everything in which Sophie Marceau had ever appeared.
Literal meaning is death because the movement of desire has been stopped.