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Au Revoir Taipei
A light-hearted, vibrant heist caper
Reviewed by Al Innes
Sunday, 27 June 2010 - 6:24am
A Franco-Chinese love story, without the French people; Au Revoir Taipei is a zestily-scored piece of Taiwanese film-making.
After losing his girlfriend to the elusive Parisian dream, our protagonist, Kai (played by Jack Yao) finds himself facing a dead-end life of heartbreak in the Taiwanese capital. Fed up with struggling to learn French on the floor of a book shop, he goes to local mobster Brother Bao (Frankie Kao) for help.
What ensues is a vibrant heist caper. It's light-hearted and coupled with the soundtrack of French-inspired jazz, the movie is the perfect anti-dote to a heavy schedule of dramatic films. The love stories weaved within the narrative are understood through an edit that keep the pace of the film going without sacrificing substance.
The one who got away' is a theme that runs right through director Arvin Chen's work. It seems like this piece is a culmination of the last four years of his output. Weaving in the themes from Eat (2006) and Mei (2008) it draws on the ideas of love, and food, set in Tapei's nightmarkets. Taipei evoked images of Hong Kong for me and I was reminded of spending time there myself pining for a girl of my own.
The story takes place largely over one hectic night in Taipei and has a few laughs thrown in to the tale. Yes, It's romantic, at times a little goofy, but the young cast do very well. There are even wry winks to the assumed fact that all Chinese movies need to include martial arts and guns. This is not that sort of film. It's fun, fast paced and rather delightful.
Au Revoir Taipei is showing Saturday 26th at 13:00 @ Cameo 1 & Sunday 27th June at 10:15 @ Cineworld 3.