Zhang Yimou (张艺谋, 1951- ) is one of the leading lights of Chinese film and is often considered one of the greatest living Chinese directors. He tends to favor stories set in rural/historical China, often with an emphasis on the dark side of the setting, and also has a very strong visual style. Many of his movies contain remarkable SceneryPorn even within quite restricted settings. Was romantically involved with Creator/GongLi for a number of years and featured her, and later Creator/ZhangZiyi as leads in many of his films.

He gained a lot of applause for directing the truly spectacular opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing UsefulNotes/OlympicGames.
!!The films of Zhang Yimou include:

* ''Red Sorghum'' - An adaptation of the Creator/MoYan novel.
* ''Film/JuDou'' - Co-directed with Yang Fengliang
* ''Film/RaiseTheRedLantern''
* ''The Story of Qiu-Ju''
* ''Literature/ToLive''
* ''Shanghai Triad''
* ''Keep Cool''
* ''Not One Less''
* ''The Road Home''
* ''Happy Times''
* ''Film/{{Hero}}''
* ''Film/{{House of Flying Daggers}}''
* ''Film/CurseOfTheGoldenFlower''
* ''Amazing Tales: Three Guns'' / ''A Woman, A Gun, and a Noodle Shop'' / ''A Simple Noodle Story'' - His first (epically failed) attempt at comedy, a remake of Creator/TheCoenBrothers film Film/BloodSimple to boot.
* ''Under the Hawthorne Tree''
* ''Film/FlowersOfWar''
* ''Film/TheGreatWall''
!!Tropes found in or relating to Zhang Yimou's work (except ''Hero'', ''House of Flying Daggers'', and ''Curse of the Golden Flower'') include:

* BannedInChina: His film ''To Live'' was banned for having a negative portrayal of CCP policies. Zhang was also banned from making films for two years.
* ColorMotif: Striking and heavily symbolic use of color is considered to be part of Zhang's SignatureStyle -- the color-coded armies in ''Film/CurseOfTheGoldenFlower'' and ''Film/TheGreatWall'' for example. Besides his {{wuxia}} films, ''Raise the Red Lantern'' is also a striking example.
* IAteWhat: Or rather ''drank'' what. In ''Red Sorghum'', pissing in the vats makes the liquor taste better.
* TheMuse: Gong Li, in his earlier period.
* SceneryPorn: Let's just say this, his films are GORGEOUS, especially ''Red Sorghum'' and ''Raise The Red Lantern''.
* UsefulNotes/SecondSinoJapaneseWar: The main setting of ''Red Sorghum'' and touched on in ''To Live''.
* {{Wuxia}}: Some of his recent films have all more or less been wuxia, in contrast to his slower-paced, more contemplative[[note]]And contemporary: his earlier films mostly dealt with 20th-century China, while the Wuxia films are set in ImperialChina[[/note]] earlier works.