What Time Is It There?

What Time Is It There? ★★★★

There's a scene where Hsiao-kang (played by Lee Kang-sheng) dozes off while watching a French classic for the first time. That, right there was high point in this film for me.

What Time Is It There? centers around distant characters Hsiao-kang & Shiang-chiyi, both connected by a chance romantic encounter in past with a watch. Their lives are presented in episodic manner alternating between Taiwan & France. Describing their isolated lives & heights they go to in creating an illusionary world of living together. Like a typical Tsai film, inspite of being extremely bleak there runs a subtle quirky humor throughout. From Tsai's growing up in Taiwan, his family, discovering foreign cinema & experiences in foreign land — loved how he leaves a personal imprint in his characters. It's too early to say but I find this to be most personal work of him so far.

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