A young woman's husband apparently commits suicide without warning or reason, leaving behind his wife and infant. Yumiko remarries and moves from Osaka to a small fishing village, yet ... See full summary »
Still Walking is a family drama about grown children visiting their elderly parents, which unfolds over one summer day. The aging parents have lived in the family home for decades. Their ... See full summary »
The film was first conceived as a three-part anthology film, each segment directed by a different person, to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great Japanese director Yasujirô Ozu. However, the other two directors dropped out before filming started, and Hou decided to make the entire film himself. See more »
Hou Hsiao-hsien's previous film, "Millennium Mambo," was filled with pulsating colors and rhythms - "Cafe Lumiere," on the other hand, offers us classical piano music, bookshops, and trains... lots of trains.
To me, the plot, and in some way the characters, seemed very fluid - you never knew where the film was leading you, and (as in many of Hou's films) it's left up to you to form your own opinion about the characters.
"Cafe Lumiere" is a very languid, soothing film, filled with marvelous images and memorable vignettes. It is not a good place for a newcomer to Hou's films to start (try "Mambo" for that), and not a good film for the impatient. However, if you approach it in the right frame of mind, you will find yourself somehow transported into another person's life for a couple of hours, and come out with the film rattling around your subconscious for days afterward.
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