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Yi-Yi by Edward Yang


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#1 Max Jacoby

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Posted 01 July 2008 - 03:04 AM

I saw a print of this film yesterday. For those of you who think that I never like any films, here is proof to the contrary, in fact I consider this film an absolute masterpiece.

Edward Yang reminds me of Ozu in the sense that he shows us life as it is. His film feels very honest, both from the staging and the storytelling point of view. He never manipulates you to get a reaction, yet his film is incredibly affecting. His shots reflect the same philosophy as he keeps his camera at a respectful distance from the characters, which actually draws you more into the film, because is stimulates your imagination. Especially some very emotional scenes towards the end (when say the father meets his first love again whose heart he broke 30 years ago) are played out in long shots, yet you find yourself very close to the character's and their emotions. This is a clear example that suggesting emotions through dialogue and body-language instead of showing them clearly and unambiguously in close-ups is a much more touching method.

As far as filmmaking goes, this is of the highest order.
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#2 Sam Wells

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Posted 01 July 2008 - 11:19 PM

Agree and the scene at the end with the Grandmother and Granddaughter was worthy of Dreyer.

-Sam
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#3 Jason Maeda

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Posted 23 July 2008 - 11:34 PM

Edward Yang was a great filmmaker. Max, there are so many amazing films that came out of the "new cinema" movement in 80's and 90's Taiwan. They explore various techniques and subject matter, but the fixed, long take medium-to-long shot is ubiquitous. Later on, the camera moved more, with mixed results.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien, "Edward" Yang, Zeng Zhuan-Xiang, Wan Jen, Tsai Ming-liang... watch everything by these directors.
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#4 Max Jacoby

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Posted 24 July 2008 - 02:56 PM

Unfortunately Edward Yang's films are not available on dvd, except Yi-Yi. Called up the Cinemathèque in Luxembourg, but they only have a print of Yi-Yi also.
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#5 Jason Maeda

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Posted 24 July 2008 - 06:48 PM

Max that sucks. Keep an eye out for asian film festivals: In between the J-Quirk and K-Horror you might see Taiwanese New Cinema. Also, here in NY, they recently had a great series on local public television.

Also, do you have a multi region dvd player? you might be able to get a dvd directly from an asian company. also, maybe a bootleg off of ebay.

It's too bad Yang's films haven't found better video distribution in the west. I guess it's better than the days when there were no dvd's at all...

Hou Hsiao-Hsien has a bunch on dvd, though. Don't start with "Millenium Mambo", it's his weakest feature. And "Flowers of Shanghai", while great, uses a constantly moving camera so it doesn't fit the criteria of the films we are talking about.

Edited by Jason Maeda, 24 July 2008 - 06:49 PM.

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#6 Max Jacoby

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 03:02 AM

There do not seem to be any dvds of his films, even in Asia. I checked some Asian sites already. Well The Terrorizers is available, but does not have any English subtitles. A friend thought that there should be HK editions, but so far I haven't found any.
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#7 Jason Maeda

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Posted 26 July 2008 - 10:37 AM

"the terrorizers" is so great, worth buying even without subtitles.

that's really too bad. I'll look around nyc and let you know if i find out anything.
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#8 Yang Liu

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 09:09 PM

"the terrorizers" is so great, worth buying even without subtitles.

that's really too bad. I'll look around nyc and let you know if i find out anything.


U know wat ,just go to the China town, u will find everything,,,but fake dvd though. I am glad u guys respect Asian films.
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#9 Sean Morris

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Posted 07 December 2008 - 06:06 AM

I love Edward Yang style, I think he is one of the best directors in Asia, also like Tsai Ming-liang - "Good Bye, Dragon Inn' & Yang Li "Blind Shaft" ,
"Blind Mountain" Zhang Yimou "The Road Home" Jia Zhang-Ke "The World", Fruit Chan...I could go on for day's ..superb cinema

Cheers
Sean
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#10 Sasha Riu

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 08:51 PM

Yi Yi !!!!

Ah...

Absolute MASTERPIECE !!!!


I just love that sense for humor!!!
:P
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