Borderlands (Zev Berman, 2007): 6.5/10

The Magic Flute (Ingmar Bergman, 1975): 7/10

La Guerre Est Finie (Alain Resnais, 1966): 7/10

Speed Racer (The Wachowski Brothers, 2008): 8/10

My Photo
Location: milwaukee, wi

Friday, September 29, 2006

Three Times (Hou Hsiao-hsien, 2005)

I had heard so much about the profundity and ambience of Hsiao-hsien's film before seeing it that I was a little intimidated by it. Maybe intimidated isn't the right word, but it seemed bigger than life. After watching it, however, Three Times, while profound, isn't about anything bigger than life, but about life itself and the love therein.

Three Times is divided into three segments, one around the turn of the 20th century, one in the 1960s, and one in present day. Qi Shu and Chen Chang play the lovers in each section, giving the entire film a timeless quality. The first segment, set in the 1960s, is about a soldier and a pool hall attendant who seem ill-fated. This one was by far my favorite, as the atmosphere (settings, costumes, all that) and music were absolutely perfect, and really set the scene for these lovers' missed connection. The acting, as in all section, is perfect, yet with very little dialogue. The body language and facial expressions of the two leads speaks volumes more than anything they ever could have said.

The second section, set in the early 1900s, is literally silent - the dialogue is presented written on screen as in silent films. At first, I was annoyed by this seemingly "cute" tactic, but as the tale of impossible love continued, it again put the focus on the characters themselves, and not what they choose to say to one another. The third story, set in present-day Taipei, deals with a disturbed, bisexual eplipetic and her affair with a man behind her girlfriend's back. If the first section's ending had the audience expecting marginally happy endings of these tales, the other two smash those perceptions. Three Times shows the tragic and inevitable nature of love; you cannot control your heart, the overriding theme seems to be. A great, beautiful movie (although I have to admit that it made me more than a little excited for Aronofsky's The Fountain, which has more or less the same premise).


Labels: ,

StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!

Comments on "Three Times (Hou Hsiao-hsien, 2005)"


post a comment