Thu, Mar 07, 2013 - Page 12 News List

Shallow focus

Taiwan’s recent cinema, which is obsessed with the dreaded rom-com genre, mimics the blandest offerings Hollywood has to offer, where the true aim is not to create a unique artistic vision or announce a new cinematic voice, but generate market success

By James T. Hong  /  Contributing reporter

Are these new Taiwanese rom-coms created as “calling card” films, for international commercial appeal, or do they actually reflect the sensibilities of the filmmakers? Do these young directors daydream about the vagaries of love? Who doesn’t? It is logically possible that the auteurist vision be one of generic universality. Unfortunately, it’s simply not very interesting.

Taiwan is not presented as something unique, and the new Taiwanese cinema merely echoes the everyday desires and emotions that anybody in the world would have. These new films are missing any special flavor, and they become Diet Coke/decaf versions of Hollywood movies, set in the exotic locale of Taiwan. They become examples of the banality of Taiwan.

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