A Brighter Summer Day Reviews

March 15, 2018
This extraordinarily tender yet epic and incisive portrait of Taiwan is one of film's great fumblings towards this elusive truth.
March 15, 2018
Here, Yang has erected a temporal experience, a completely immersive world that few artists in any medium could ever hope to do. If you love cinema, you'll love this movie. That's a promise.
Top Critic
March 15, 2018
A Brighter Summer Day's extended running time pays off: Si'r's spiral towards tragedy never stretches credibility, because Yang takes the time to let it realistically occur, showing us each factor that contributes to his slow transformation.
March 15, 2018
A film that somehow manages to exist simultaneously as a painstakingly detailed coming-of-age story, a paean to the eternal awesomeness of rock and roll, and an entrancing tone poem. If this isn't a masterpiece, then what is?
July 5, 2017
A Brighter Summer Day is not for the faint-hearted, yet its rewards are manifold.
June 5, 2016
A burning indictment on defining a national identity forged from those left in the dust of modern history.
May 18, 2016
Politics and movies and fathers and sons and mothers and daughters and first love and scorching, insensate first jealousy... almost hallucinatory violence that feels like Greek tragedy and Proust and Shakespeare and electric shadows.
March 9, 2016
Yang's graceful, naturalistic way of inserting politically fraught signifiers into his characters' hands could teach other film-makers a thing or two.
March 8, 2016
You won't relish the thought of spending four hours with Si'r, but A Brighter Summer Day will leave you wanting even more.
March 7, 2016
Yang's methods bring a melancholy tenderness to his recollections. He films intricately staged action in long takes of a rueful, contemplative reserve.
August 27, 2012
Masterly done four-hour loosely based autobiographical film of the late Taiwan filmmaker Edward Yang.
December 1, 2011
Magnificent achievement by the late Edward Yang pushes him even higher in the pantheon of great directors.
November 27, 2011
One of those movies that, by slow accretion of detail and bold dramatic vision, disclose the structure and feeling of an entire world.
September 8, 2007
Yang's film doesn't waste a single second of its four hours, and taken as a whole, reveals a beautiful, intricate, masterful tapestry that is as accomplished in its grand, quiet way as is The Godfather trilogy.
June 24, 2006
The measured pace may be off-putting, but stay with it -- the accumulated wealth of detail invests the unexpected final scenes with enormous, shocking power.
April 4, 2004
A Brighter Summer Day is itself in color, but it may as well be monochrome.
May 24, 2003
Zhang Zhen is impressive as the youth caught up in violence and gang rivalry, his troubled adolescence a metaphor for the increasingly changing ideals and landscape of a society in flux.
November 26, 2002
A powerful statement from Yang's generation about what it means to be Taiwanese, superior even to his recent masterpiece Yi Yi.
November 25, 2002
A Brighter Summer Day stands as a massive achievement, perhaps the greatest in all of modern Taiwanese cinema.