Probably her greatest role to date have been on the 2016 movie The Great Wall, a big budget production, directed by legendary Chinese director Zhang Yimou. Despite being a movie entirely shot in China, the stars of the cast were American actors Matt Damon and Willem Dafoe, something that deflagrated a heated controversy.
The movie is about two obscure merchants, William Garin and Pero Tovar – portrayed by Matt Damon and Pedro Pascal, respectively – that are wandering through China to seek for gunpowder, expecting to make money out of this. They are initially part of a group, but they are attacked by a brutal and violent monster; most of them are savagely killed by the beast. Only Garin and Tovar survives, as Garin manages to fight back, even cutting off what appeared to be the arm of the creature. They are eventually captured by a group of warriors, members of the mysterious Nameless Order.
Then they are taken to a great palace to meet the leaders of the order, and there they meet Commander Lin Mae (portrayed by Jing Tian) and Ballard (portrayed by Willem Dafoe), a foreigner that is somewhat being held captive, since he is not allowed to leave the order; there, Garin and Tovar learn that the creature that attacked them are Taotie, furious evil beasts that periodically attacks China, and the main reason behind the existence of the Nameless Order is to fight back these malevolent creatures.
A marvelous movie at least in the visual aspects, as well as with Raise the Red Lantern and The Flowers of War, Zhang Yimou proved one more time why he is one of the greatest directors alive. An exceedingly formidable motion picture, that has everything to be considered a classic in the not so distant future, if the plot can be tiresome and even monotonous – following some generic formulas – at certain points, nevertheless, several other elements compensate its minor deficiencies, like the epic scale of the movie, the astounding, artistic and fantastic visuals, the characters – that are dense, multilayered, overall dramatic, realistically portrayed and convincing – and the sensational acting skills of everybody involved, are qualities developed high enough to satisfy the audience.
Though Jing Tian is young and her career is only beginning, her marvelous potential was showcased in a greatest scale in this fantastic epic movie. Not only her fabulous acting skills could be highlighted in a greater perspective, her beauty, combined with the profound density of her character – aligned with the fact that she was one of the movie’s protagonists – certainly has enabled her to be projected as one of the greatest acting talents of her generation.
Already acclaimed as a television favorite and a movie star in ascension in China, Jing Tian is a marvelous actress that has a fantastic future ahead of her. She certainly has potential to develop her sensational talent, as long as she manages to have relevant roles.