月光下,我記得 | The Moon Also Rises

The Moon Also Rises

In a coastal village near Taidong during the 1960’s, a single, middle-aged mother, Bao-chai, lives a quiet life with her daughter, Xi-lian, a 20-year old schoolteacher. After conservative Bao-chai finds out that Xi Lian has fallen for her cousin, she forbids them to see each other. As time passes, Xi-lian finds love again, this time with Chu-cheng, a new teacher at her school from mainland China. When Chu-Cheng is relocated, he writes love letters to Xi-lian. Unknown to Xi-lian, the letters are intercepted and read by Bao-chai, who, in reading them, has feelings awakened in her that has been buried for most of her life. Then, one day, Chu-cheng comes to visit, and something happens that will change these three quiet lives forever…

Directed by Cheng-sheng Lin | Starring : Kuei-Mei Yang, Yi-nan Shih, Chia-Yu Lin | Presented at Tokyo Film Festival

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天边一朵云 | The Wayward Cloud

The Wayward Cloud

The most audacious film to date from visionary director Tsai Ming-liang, The Wayward Cloud is about a porn actor and the museum tour guide who enters into a strange relationship with him, unaware of his profession. Hsiao-kang is the same alienated youth whose chance encounter with Shiang-chyi provided the spark that fueled Tsai’s earlier films. Once again, these two lost souls cross paths—he now works as an actor in no-budget porn films, and she wanders around Taipei, hoarding bottles of water because of a serious drought. In fact, the government is recommending that people eat watermelons to hydrate themselves. This fruit sets in motion a perverse (and often hilarious) symbolic theme throughout much of the film. As in his earlier film The Hole, Tsai adds trashy, campy musical numbers into the narrative. These sequences play against the raw sex scenes, creating a bizarre, existential chaos. The filmmaker has created a perfectly realized alternative universe in his ongoing exploration of sex, bodies, and loneliness. His stationary camera perfectly illustrates the isolation and exploitation the characters are trapped in—yet the film is as funny as it is emotionally tortured. Tsai’s characters are indeed wayward clouds, drifting through life without purpose, in a world without water. And prepare yourself for the film’s unbelievable final scene, which manages to be both weirdly erotic and profoundly disturbing.

Directed by Ming-liang Tsai | Starring : Kang-sheng Lee, Shiang-chyi Chen, Yi-Ching Lu, Kuei-Mei Yang, Sumomo Yozakura | Presented at Berlin Film Festival, Brisbane Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, Sitges Film Festival, Stockholm Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Nantes Film Festival, Alba Regia Film Festival, Helsinki Film Festival

不散 | Goodbye Dragon Inn

Goodbye Dragon Inn

A Japanese tourist takes refuge from a rainstorm inside a once-popular movie theater, a decrepit old barn of a cinema that is screening a martial arts classic, King Hu’s 1966 “Dragon Inn.” Even with the rain bucketing down outside, it doesn’t pull much of an audience – and some of those who have turned up are less interested in the movie than in the possibility of meeting a stranger in the dark.

Directed by Ming-liang Tsai | Starring : Kang-sheng Lee, Shiang-chyi Chen, Kiyonobu Mitamura, Tien Miao, Chao-jung Chen | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Vancouver Film Festival, Pusan Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Vienna Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival, London Film Festival, Hawaii Film Festival, Stockholm Film Festival, Oslo Film Festival, Nantes Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Febio Film Festival, Belgrade Film Festival, Wisconsin Film Festival, Buenos Aires Film Festival, Istanbul Film Festival, Hong Kong Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival, Munich Film Festival, La Rochelle Film Festival, Maine Film Festival

鲁宾逊漂流记 | Robinson’s Crusoe

Robinson's Crusoe

The film follows Robinson, a very succesfull real estate broker, who lives in a modern hotel in Taipei. But all the success also hides a lonely man, whose relations are becoming distant, including friends and lovers; Robinson’s dream is the Crusoe, an island on the Caribbean, which he wants to try purchase.

Directed by Cheng-sheng Lin | Starring : Leon Dai, Shiang-chyi Chen, Angelica Lee, Kuei-Mei Yang, Phoenix Cheng | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Pusan Film Festival, Sao Paulo Film Festival, Hawaii Film Festival

双瞳 | Double Vision

Double Vision

Taipei, the teeming capital of Taiwan, is a city in which the high-tech trappings of modern life compete with beliefs that reach back four millennia into Chinese history. It is a place where ghosts are considered as real as skyscrapers, and in which one troubled police officer comes up against an evil so dark that it threatens not only his life, but his very soul. Ace detective Huang Huo-tu is falling apart. As payback for blowing the whistle on corruption in the force, he’s relegated to the do-nothing job of Foreign Affairs Officer. His fellow policemen have turned on him, and his wife, Ching-fang, is filing for divorce. But, then, three grisly murders shake up the department. The victims are unrelated, but the Coroner finds a mysterious black fungus in their brains, along with evidence that they had all died in a hallucinatory state.

Directed by Kuo-fu Chen | Starring : Tony Leung Ka Fai, Rene Liu, Leon Dai, David Morse, Kuei-Mei Yang | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival

洞 | The Hole

The Hole

The Hole uses an enigmatic symbolic language to explore social alienation in the bleak cityscapes of contemporary Taiwan. Seven days before the turn of the millennium, a rain-sodden Taipei City is under siege by a mysterious virus. Symptoms include fever and an acute photophobia that drives sufferers to scuttle like cockroaches in search of dark, isolated hiding places. As a result of ‘Taiwan Fever’ sections of the city are quarantined and their essential services cut off by the government. The film is set in an apartment block in a quarantine zone where residents, played by Lee Kang-Sheng and Yang Kuei-Mei, remain in defiance of quarantine regulations. Yang’s apartment, directly below Lee’s, develops a leak and a plumber in search of the leaking pipe bores a hole in Lee’s floor and Yang’s ceiling. The hole that now joins the two apartments is large enough to see through, and Yang and Lee develop an ambivalent, wordless relationship as a result of their new proximity. Yang succumbs to the virus, and in the final scene, Lee’s arm extends through the hole in her ceiling, offering her a glass of water. Finally, Yang grasps Lee’s arm and is lifted through the hole into the brightly lit offscreen space of Lee’s apartment.

Directed by Ming-liang Tsai | Starring : Kang-sheng Lee, Kuei-Mei Yang, Tien Miao, Hui-Chin Lin, Hsiang-Chu Tong | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Vancouver Film Festival, Sitges Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, London Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Kerala Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival, Febio Film Festival, Buenos Aires Film Festival, Athens Film Festival

河流 | The River

The River

Hsiao-kang shares an apartment in Taipei with his parents, but the three of them lead very separate lives. His mother works as an elevator attendant in a restaurant and is having an affair with a man who pirates porno vidotapes. Hsiao-kang is drifting through life without a job, while his father, a pensioner, pursues a solitary quest for illicit pleasures in the city’s gay saunas. As an extra in a film, Hsiao-kang plays a body adrift in the heavily polluted Tamsui River. He begins to suffer a terrible pain in his neck, but no one seems to able to cure him. In desperation, Hsiao-kang travels with his father to Taichung, to visit a faith healer. While waiting to see him, the father gets bored and decides to visit a local men’s sauna. Coincidentally, Hsiao-kang has the same idea… Life is like a river: there will always be some dark, deep, damp corners.

Directed by Ming-liang Tsai | Starring : Kang-sheng Lee, Chao-jung Chen, Shiang-chyi Chen, Yi-Ching Lu, Tien Miao | Presented at Berlin Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival, San Francisco Film Festival, Edinburgh Film Festival, Sao Paulo Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, Thessaloniki Film Festival