This episodic Taiwanese feature starts off as a lively and affecting teen movie, with three high school friends coming of age under martial law in 1985. Writer-director Yang Ya-che understands how youthful rebellion can feed political rebellion—the section climaxes with a wonderfully choreographed scene of civil disobedience—and matches his characters' revolutionary enthusiasm with fluid camerawork and vibrant color. Unfortunately he drops the politics in the movie's second half, when the main characters, now yuppies in late-90s Taipei, get entangled in a love triangle. The shift from social portrait to domestic soap opera practically negates the democratic message of the first section, but Yang's stylish filmmaking is impressive throughout. In Mandarin with subtitles.
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