Intended as the concluding film in the trilogy on the modern history of Taiwan began with Beiqing Chengshi (1989), this film reveals the story through three levels: a film within a film as ... See full summary »
In Shanghai in the 1880s there are four elegant brothels (flower houses): each has an auntie (called madam), a courtesan in her prime, older servants, and maturing girls in training. The ... See full summary »
Tony Chiu Wai Leung,
Ah-Ching and his friends have just finished school in their island fishing village, and now spend most of their time drinking and fighting. Three of them decide to go to the port city of ... See full summary »
In the first half of this century, young Li Tienlu joines a travelling puppet theatre and subsequently makes a career as one of Taiwan's leading puppeteers. During World War II the Japanese... See full summary »
A-yuan and A-yun are both from the small mining town of Jio-fen. In the city, A-yuan is an apprentice by day and goes to night school, and A-yun works as a helper at a tailors. Everyone ... See full summary »
Da-Nian is a young man from Taipei. He goes to a remote village and works as a substitute teacher. He and Su-Yun, another teacher at the school, fall in love. There are several students in ... See full summary »
This portrait of a teen-age girl in contemporary Taipei foreshadows Hou's later cycle of films dealing with urban alienation (Goodbye South, Goodbye; Millennium Mambo; Café Lumière) but it's told so disjointedly and haphazardly, cluttered with apparently irrelevant filler-scenes, as to become almost incomprehensible. Gradually, around the 50-minute mark, something resembling a story emerges, about gangsters trying to shake down the main character's brother, to which she is a passive and often distant witness, so that we're left wondering why we're looking at events through her eyes, when she's so far removed from said events, while her character isn't compelling or interesting enough to carry the film on her own merits. If you're generous, you could call Daughter of the Nile a narrative experiment, but the only thing the experiment proves is that even Hou Hsiao-hsien is capable of making a truly bad film.
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