The Last Emperor
This was the title track played in the movie. The instrument sounds as if someone is crying or the wind is howling. It is sweet yet sorrowful and makes me want to travel to smell the air of the faraway land, alone. The instrument is called erhu.
The movie was released in 1987, depicted the life of Puyi, the last emperor of Qing dynasty and the puppet emperor of Japanese-controlled state of Manchukuo. I cannot remember how the story goes. Back then, the renditions of erhu were often seen and heard on the television probably because of this title track of the popular movie.
The erhuists I saw were often Chinese women in flowing dresses. I thought I would never know if the performing erhuist was moaning or giving up all hopes. Or whether she was determined or too frail to be sure. It was when I first got a very vague idea about the beauty of woman who just sits there and minding her own business.