- Directed by Zero Chou
- Wolfe Video
- 99 Minutes
- Mandarin & Taiwanese with English subtitles
A landscape both sophisticated and innocent immediately engages the viewer in the stories of Jing, Amy and Diego.
Jing, a blind singer caring for her very young sister, May, falls for accordion player Diego, a tough, independent tomboy. Jing acquiesces to a local social worker’s assessment that “your way of living isn’t good for a child” and May finds herself in lush surroundings with a childless couple. Jing and Diego move forward with their life together while Jing mourns the loss of May.
May grows up and the three are reunited as May is college bound. The last scene shows Jing and Diego playing at a wedding where a female friend of bride Lily takes her into an anteroom and passionately kisses her. Yen, the groom, follows with his groomsman and the separate queer pairings are evident.
Decades later, Lily is elderly, frail and catatonic until Yen comes to visit. Having been cast out by his partner because he is sick, Yen searches out the woman he married. Lily has delusions that the two are in fact a “real” married couple.
Beautiful, Dark, Bleak
The film ends with a flashback to the teenage Diego coming to terms with her gender identity and lesbianism. The through line of the stories is complicated and the seeming slowness of the film is rather poignant silence and rich visuals deftly executed.
My Rating: 5 stars. Magnificently written and directed by Zero Chou, lovingly scored by Christine Hsu and with stunning cinematography by Hoho Liu, this eloquent collection of intertwined stories is so heartrending that it is impossible to keep a steady gaze, but also impossible to look away.