Defying his parents, Hsiao Kang drops out of the local crammer to head for the bright lights of downtown Taipei. He falls in with Ah Tze, a pretty hood and their relationships is a confused mixture of hero-worship and rivalry that soon leads to trouble.Written by
L.H. Wong <firstname.lastname@example.org>
On a more obvious level of multiple layers, a crucial, cultural point of significance seems lost in translation. As Rebels of the neon god comprise the sense of urban alienation, tradition and cultural adaptation, secularization, the decaying city and loss of identity, the original title translates literally Teenage Nezha. And as implied by his frustrated mother, the main character of Hsiao Kang bares resembling "qualities" to that of the rebel god, born into a human family and in constant opposition. While most reincarnations of Nezha grow additional limbs for the purpose of eradicating their father, Hsiao's idle hands become the playground for the prankster god. Sparked by an act of force, the two main plots of the film intertwine, and are further fueled by the returning violence. After their encounter in the arcade, Hsiao can be seen playing the same shoot-em-up as the one Ah Tze played while sitting next to him, symbolizing a change in character and the unraveling of the revenge. The directors returning use of water as ever-present, controlling element of nature, suppressing spaces of confined and human, primal behavior sets up a hierarchy of command in the metropolitan chaos of Taipei.
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