The annual Taiwan Film Festival is presenting a special retrospective selection devoted to the work of master Taiwanese film-maker Edward Yang (1947-2007). Yang made only seven films in an all too brief career but he is recognised, along with Hou Hsiao-hsien as one of the most influential film-makers of his day. In the obituary by Michael Atkinson published in Sight & Sound, Atkinson’s summed up Yang’s contribution thus: “Yang’s best work still throbs with the regrets and memories of history, displaying an understated eye and ear for the tearful poetry of a modern life which moves too fast for its wounds to heal.”
The tribute consists of two of Yang’s finest films, his early feature Taipei Story (1985) starring Yang’s friend and peer Hou Hsiao-hsien, and his seventh and final Yi Yi/A One and A Two for which he was awarded the Best Director prize at Cannes in 2000.
For an introduction to Yang and the new Taiwanese cinema of the 1980s check out a terrific video piece Everyday Realities: Tony Rayns on New Taiwan Cinema and Edward Yang made by Criterion for their release of Yang's Taipei Story. It is here on YouTube
YI YI/A ONE AND A TWO - SCREENS AT 6.00 PM ON SATURDAY 30 JULY AT EVENT CINEMAS GEORGE STREET
“ …a detailed and very moving account across three generations of a family of the ways people cope with crises and emotional setbacks…This is one film which justifies a three hour running time: each character is drawn with warmth and complexity, and each has to deal with issues that are all too recognisably real…” Tony Rayns, Time Out Film Guide
The film won the "Best Film" award from the National Society of Film Critics (USA) in 2001 (where Yang also won 2nd place for a Best Director award), the "Best Foreign Film" award from the 2000 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards, the "Best Foreign Film" award from the 2000 New York Film Critics Circle Awards. Yi Yi was also named "Best Film of the Year" (2000) by the following film critics and writers: A.O. Scott of The New York Times, Susan Sontag writing for ArtForum and Michael Atkinson of the Village Voice.
TAIPEI STORY – SCREENS AT 6.00 PM ON SATURDAY 7 AUGUST AT EVENT CINEMAS PARAMATTA
“The film that introduced Yang’s prodigious talent to the West is a quietly stunning drama which sees the various problems facing a rapidly modernized city reflected in the lives of a dozen or so subtly observed characters…Yang’s insights and honesty about emotions ensure interest throughout; and it looks absolutely superb.” Tom Charity, Time Out Film Guide
Book tickets to all sessions https://www.taiwanfilmfestival.org.au/2022