Fri, Aug 14, 2015 - Page 10 News List

Movie releases

Compiled by Han Cheung  /  Staff reporter

Our Times 我的少女時代

Yet another “youthful days” movie out of Taiwan, this film’s exaggerated dialogue and mannerisms of the characters make it appear to be just another cutesy high school flick — albeit set in the main character’s memories of the 1990s. But high school is high school, no matter what the era is. There’s the super handsome guy on the basketball team that the entire school’s female population is in love with, including the plain-looking female protagonist, who is then befriended by an (also handsome) delinquent who enlists her to help him get with the school’s most popular girl. You can guess what happens from there. The trailer bills the film as “a gift for ordinary girls,” and with phrases like “always remember the courage of youth,” this film will either make you squirm or warm your heart. Oh, there’s a cameo by megastar Andy Lau (劉德華).

The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

British filmmaker Guy Ritchie takes a stab at remaking the popular US spy action series from the 1960s. Unlike many recent remakes that try to modernize the film, this one is still set at the height of the Cold War in the 1960s, and it does pay homage to the era with its shooting style, fashion choices and jazzy soundtrack. The story focuses on two United Network Command for Law and Enforcement (U.N.C.L.E.) agents (one is CIA, one is KGB and they don’t like each other) and their mission to escort a German nuclear scientist’s daughter to find her father, who is being forced to build a nuclear bomb for evil forces. Many critics say that the film has plenty of swagger and style, is beautifully produced and makes for light-hearted, fast-paced entertainment, but that it lacks substance — most point to the lack of chemistry between the two protagonists, which should have been the film’s main driving force.

Latin Lover

Featuring several big-name European movie stars, this Italian comedy marks the last big screen appearance of “Italian Goddess” Virna Lisi, who died at age 78 in December last year. The story begins when the 10th death anniversary celebration of fictional movie star Saverio Crispo turns into a giant family reunion. The event is held in Crispo’s hometown, where his first wife and daughter live. Eventually, all the women in Crispo’s life are gathered: two wives and four daughters from four different women in four different countries. A fifth daughter later appears, and there’s plenty of drama and laughs to be generated from these characters hanging around the house. This film also serves as an ode to the heyday of Italian cinema, with Crispo’s legacy revealed in fictional television bits that allude to the careers and lives of some of Italy’s biggest heartthrobs of the past.

Song of the Reed 蘆葦之歌

Today is International Memorial Day for Comfort Women, and also marks the release of Song of the Reed, a documentary on Taiwan’s comfort women, who were forced into sexual slavery for the Japanese Army before and during World War II. The trailer opens with one of these women barely containing her emotions as she talks about how she was looked down upon because of what she was forced to do. While it’s a somber subject, the film doesn’t just portray sadness and hardship. It’s also about being strong and living on, as you also see these women, in their old age, laugh and dance and attend exhibits and events about the subject through a series of workshops put on by the Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation (台北婦女救援基金會) to help them deal with the past. As much as it highlights the brutality these women endured, it also shows that letting go of and healing is just as important.

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