ONE WEEK ONLY! In 19th-century China, seven year old girls Snow Flower and Lily are matched as laotong - or "old sames" - bound together for eternity. Isolated by their families, they furtively communicate by taking turns writing in a secret language, nu shu, between the folds of a white silk fan. In a parallel story in present day Shanghai, the laotong's descendants, Nina and Sophia, struggle to maintain the intimacy of their own childhood friendship in the face of demanding careers, complicated love lives, and a relentlessly evolving Shanghai. Drawing on the lessons of the past, the two modern women must understand the story of their ancestral connection, hidden from them in the folds of the antique white silk fan, or risk losing one another forever.
"[SNOW FLOWER AND THE SECRET FAN is a] Visually stunning drama linking past and present China in parallel stories about the laotong pairing of females into intense friendships should score solidly with, of course, female art-house patrons. Guys with taste will also pay attention." - Doris Toumarkine, Film Journal International
"[SNOW FLOWER AND THE SECRET FAN is] An emotionally powerful tale of two sets of Chinese women in two different centuries." - Kirk Honeycutt, Hollywood Reporter
"As the parallel friendships evolve over time, both push and pull between platonic and erotic; it's to the film's credit that it never definitively suggests that love can only be one or the other." –Karina Longworth, Village Voice