一个好爸爸 | Run Papa Run

Run Papa Run1

Run Papa Run is a bit of a different take on the usual Hong Kong gangster movie shenanigans. In the film, Louis Koo plays Lee, a young man who finds father figures in the Triads his mother takes care of in her underground clinic. Despite his mother’s objections, Lee joins the local gang, and soon becomes one of the most powerful gangsters in Hong Kong. However, things are turned upside down for Lee soon after her meets a pretty lawyer named Mabel. After getting Mabel pregnant and marrying her in a shotgun wedding, Lee finds himself wanting to be a “good” Triad for the sake of his daughter, Heiyi. Of course, it isn’t so easy for a hardened gangster to be a nice guy, and Lee must try to balance the needs of both of his “families”.

Directed by Sylvia Chang | Starring : Louis Koo, Rene Liu, Nora Miao, Siu Chung Mok, Suet Lam | Presented at Hong Kong Film Festival

20 30 40

20 30 40

Three women in different stages of their lives – 20, 30, 40 – face the hardships of the female existence. Xiao Jie has just turned twenty. She is in Taipei for the first time in her life. Now that she has finally escaped her strict parents she can’t wait to make her dream of becoming a pop star come true. When she meets the rather insensitive manager, Brother Shi, she believes she has at last found someone who will help to ‘foster’ her ambitions. But her new-found independence has unexpectedly dangerous consequences for her emotions… Xiang Xiang, a thirtysomething flight attendant, is caught between two men. In the throes of a passionate affair with a married man, she also has a younger lover… Lily Zhao is a forty-year-old divorcee. She thoroughly enjoys her life as a single woman and happily agrees to one rendezvous after another. One day, Lily – who looks much younger than her age – meets an attractive single man named Jerry. The only snag is that he is currently dating a girl that is the same age as Lily’s own daughter.

Directed by Sylvia Chang | Starring : Sylvia Chang, Rene Liu, Angelica Lee, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Anthony Wong Chau-Sang | Presented at Berlin Film Festival, Portland 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

征婚启事 | The Personals

The Personals

This deceptively modest work from director Chen Kuo-fu proceeds from a typical romcom premise but detours into darker and more emotionally resonant territory. Tu Chia-chen, a successful but unfulfilled ophthalmologist, takes out a personal ad seeking potential marriage partners. The variously unsuitable respondents provide Tu with a growing voyeuristic thrill, but she eventually develops a genuine romantic interest in a sensitive ex-con. Consisting largely of two-person conversations in a repeated locations,  reflecting its origins as a stage play, The Personals still allows Chen Kuo-fu some spirited visual flourishes, anchored by Liu’s Golden Horse Award-winning performance.

Directed by Kuo-fu Chen | Starring : Rene Liu, Chao-jung Chen, Wu Bai, Shih-Chieh Chin, Bao-ming Gu | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Montréal Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival

美丽在唱歌 | Murmur of Youth

Murmur of Youth

Two girls both named “Mei Li” who live their own drifting aimleasly life. One day, the creato let them come across and know closely in the ticket booth which marked “No Admittance” Finally, they find the love and enjoy their life experiences each other.

Directed by Cheng-sheng Lin | Starring : Rene Liu, Jing Tseng, Chin-Hsin Tsai, Vicky Wei, Chao-jung Chen | Presented at Toronto Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival

今天不回家 | Tonight Nobody Goes Home

Tonight Nobody Goes Home

A funny, light weight comedy from Sylvia Chang. We all know that yawning is contagious, but to the Chen family contagiousness extends to taking on an extra-marital affair. Gua Ah-leh is at the movie’s centre: she shines as Lung’s wife, who finds she has a thing or two to learn from the gigolo after Lung blithely. Lang Hisung plays old dentist for broad comedy (showing a different side from his starring roles in Ang Lee’s films); he is sixty years old but still physically fit and full of charisma. He wants to be able to experience the vitality of a burning passion for one last once. leaves her. The extra-familial affair is discovered.

Directed by Sylvia Chang | Starring : Sihung Lung, Ya-lei Kuei, Winston Chao, Rene Liu, Jordan Chan | Presented at Toronto Film Festival, Singapore Film Festival

少女小渔 | Siao Yu

Siao Yu

Directed by Sylvia Chang, who avoids the usual pitfalls of the greencard-marriage movie. Set in Lower Manhattan, this film chronicles the travails of two Taiwanese illegal aliens: Siao-yu works as a sweatshop seamstress while her lover, Jiang Wei, is a student working in Chinatown’s fish market. They meet a middle-aged Italian-American, Mario, a writer who has racked up a large gambling debt. They agree to give him the $10,000 he needs if he will only marry Siao-yu and get her a green card. Following the “wedding,” Siao-yu moves into his spare bedroom, after which they become unexpected and oddly-matched friends. Meanwhile, Siao-yu’s actual boyfriend, and Mario’s wife — who left him long ago — reassert their presence during this bogus arrangement.

Directed by Sylvia Chang | Starring : Rene Liu, Daniel J. Travanti, Chung-Hua Tou, Marj Dusay, Tai-Feng Hsia | Presented at Toronto Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival