A Brighter Summer Day
Directed by Edward Yang
Running time: 237 min
A Brighter Summer Day (1991), directed by the late Edward Yang, is a classic of 'New Taiwan' cinema. Nearly four hours long, and using over 100 amateur actors, the film is a rites of passage story set against the political backdrop of 1960s Taipei. Based on a real story of juvenile homicide that the director remembers from his early teens, the film is a richly layered family drama but also a social history of a particular moment in fractured Chinese history when thousands of Chinese people left the mainland to repatriate in Taiwan. The film stars Chen Chang as Xiao S'ir, a stoic boy who is struggling at night school while hanging out with the local gang by day. Following the ups and downs of Xiao, the film is alternately tranquil and violent, an experiential movie with an acute sense of detail and also a bitter sense of irony. Yang became known in the west for his last film Yi-Yi, and both Yi-Yi and A Brighter Summer's Day are polyphonic and panoramic - richly textured narratives that are truly epic in proportion.
Reservation is not necessary, but places are limited. Please arrive early to avoid disappointment.