Yi Yi - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Yi Yi Reviews

Page 1 of 26
½ March 12, 2017
While I prefer A Brighter Summer day, Yi Yi explores life themes on a larger scale, using many of the same methods.
February 10, 2017
Though a bit long, this is a wonderful family movie
September 14, 2016
** Why are we afraid of the first time? Every day in life is a first time. Every morning is new. We never live the same day twice. We're never afraid of getting up every morning. Why? "
August 19, 2016
This movies has some great scene.
However it's too long.
August 18, 2016
It takes a great filmmaker to make the mundane of everyday beautiful and fascinating. Fortunately director Edward Yang is well up to the task with Yi Yi, a film about life and relationships. It's all very subtle and decidedly understated, but also complex in its observations about life and existence.
May 31, 2016
I usually tell people this is the best film I have ever seen. I think it is a film geek's type of film though, the plot is very simple, but profound all the same. It is a family story told in a way that I think all kinds of people will relate to something. But more than the wonderfull acting is the breathtaking cinematography, this one is a stunner. So many rich shots, drenched with layers and timing, use of color, framing, its a gem and I love it.
March 20, 2016
Really nice film about a Taiwanese family and a bunch of stories happening to each member. Quite original and interesting.
January 22, 2016
Very long. Ensemble piece a la Grand Canyon, with lots of characters dealing with quotidian, first world, middle class depression. Although I enjoyed it, not quite sure why it got such a high metascore. However I did enjoy the pulling-back-of-the-curtain on what life in Asia is like.
July 4, 2015
For films like this, it is actually unnecessary to "review" or "analyse", as nothing is more common in the world than the humanist care that people give each other. By that, of course I do not mean that "Yi Yi" is a perfect film, as it is surely less accessible than the great works by Edward Yang's compatriot - Ang Lee, whose view and thoughts are equally humanist but more "global" (some may say "Westernised"). Luckily enough for me, being born in the "Sinosphere", Edward Yang's "Yi Yi" to me is utterly oriental with a deeply Buddhist sense of Prat?tyasamutpada, in simpler words the close and dependent relationship between people, between past and present, between life and death. The way Edward Yang unveiled his interconnected layers of human stories in "Yi Yi" is utterly charming, soothing, yet it still makes the audience delightfully surprised by the subtle reflection of one generation's destiny on its successor's, by numerous abrupt turns or terminations of such stories, often through obscurity and blurriness of details. I was deeply fascinated by the fact that Edward Yang in some cases concealed important details or outcomes of his stories from the audience, or only let them know in a very "hear-say", indirect ways that really reflect the fact that as our back (the physical back that is), there are plenty of things in life that we cannot see, ever, just like the future, just like how people really think about us, just like our ultimate destiny in life, no matter how wise we are, no matter how "far-sight" we try to be. Thus, the best thing we can do is to "cover" the back of our beloved ones by our love, true love, just like the small but ever wise Yang-Yang, who in his simple but dearest way takes pictures of whom he loves, from their back, so that they would never have to die without knowing how their back really looks like. It was a huge lost to the Taiwanese cinema, and the global cinema actually, when Yang died too early from cancer, but he will always be remembered for his humanist films, especially this "Last Bow", the best "bow" possible to the audience that is.
½ May 1, 2015
Holy cow! I think I just discovered the movie that Richard Linklater watched when he came up with the idea for Boyhood. This is a 3-hour-long plod through a year in the life of a Taiwanese family. The reason I bring up the Boyhood comparison is because Yi Yi is also kind of like watching a family's home-movies, but not the exciting moments that you would actually videotape. Instead this is loaded with the down moments, and also a bunch of bland scenes where nothing of interest happens. It has some scenes that are promising and make you think something really dramatic is about to happen, at these moments I got my hopes up that the movie was about to take a turn to be really intriguing. Sadly, before long the drama peters out and they go back to depicting the mundane aspects of everyday existences. Towards the end of the film, when it teased me again in this way, I literally said out loud "There's no way anything this interesting will happen in this movie." Sure enough, it was just another fake-out and all the excitement was gone in a flash.

There are other issues as well. One more aspect that reminded me of Boyhood was the way they had young people sharing conversations that no one their age would ever have. In fact the youngest member of the family has more profound lines than anyone else in the movie. It just feels too scripted, particularly in a movie that is attempting to capture real life. My other difficulty with Yi Yi was the shot selection. Edward Yang seemingly enjoys setting the camera down on a tripod, then having his actors stand about 30 feet away and act out a scene without moving the camera when someone steps out of the shot. I guess it gives a fly-on-the-wall feel to our view of the film, but it also kept me emotionally detached from the actors. However, the real dilemma is that 3-hour length. There wasn't enough plot to fill that quantity of time, even though they were trying to tell at least three different stories at once. It's 30 minutes of good content thinly spread over 3 hours of film. I will admit there were snippets that worked for me. I particularly liked when they overlaid the father talking about the memory of his first love with images of his daughter going through the same thing. Also anything the young boy did, while a little deep and philosophical for his age, was fun to watch. I just don't think I could ever ask another human being to sit through this film. Yi Yi, while critically acclaimed, won't draw in the average movie-goer like me.
April 25, 2015
One of the greatest movies of the decade
February 22, 2015
It's films like these that remind me why I watch film. Simply wonderful.
½ October 4, 2014
Encapsulating; it sets off on a pace that had me looking at my watch at first, but the story then unfolded and the depth of these characters whom I genuinely cared about only got deeper and richer.
September 20, 2014
When a man runs into his first love at his brother-in-law's wedding thirty years later, he starts to question the direction his life has taken. Meanwhile his teenage daughter falls for her best friend's boyfriend & his precocious son uses photography to explain existential truths in this deftly constructed film. Beginning with a wedding & ending with a funeral, this film examines the life & struggles of a modern Taiwanese family.
½ September 17, 2014
Somewhat tedious slice-of-life stuff with a few brilliant moments thrown in to redeem the whole movie.
½ September 12, 2014
A brilliant "epic" about everyday people. Don't let the long running time scare you away. See this film.
½ September 3, 2014
Yang Yang! Vraiment touchant.
June 26, 2014
Nearly three hours long and it never overstays its welcome.
½ April 28, 2014
it is meaningless to talk about a good movie , much easier to talk about a bad one.
April 6, 2014
Yi Yi: A One and a Two (2000) - 9,5

First time I see this work from Edward Yang, one of the leading names of contemporary Cinema of Taiwan, whom I completely ignored until now. It brought "A Separation" from Asghar Farhadi back to my memory, another movie which also depicts the everyday hurdles of a family and with reminiscent aesthetics although not as fleshed out and subtle... I felt that movie was trying to achieve something similar but in much lesser scale, and yet it failed to exert in me a positive impression like the charming "Yi Yi". The thing that lacked in the iranian movie was present in the taiwanese in just the right doses to add that touch of nuance so necessary for the authenticity of human relations: affection/tenderness between people of different genders. You'd think this is a ridiculously basic thing to bi**h about, anyway to me any serious familiar drama must be able to depict the fundamental reason why families are formed: love between different gender people (assuming we're talking about hetero relationships, of course). This can be shown in all sorts of subtle ways, but it was almost non-existent in "A Separation", and at times women seemed to have a sort of manly manner to their way of being... very very weird and of putting to me. This, among other things, very much limited the power of persuasion and the ability to touch me of the iranian work, I didn't connect, it felt flat and boring. I guess the fact that it was a familiar drama filmed almost as a sort of thriller didn't help, there's nothing thrilling in familiar quotidian life, it's mostly emotional, an aspect where it felt short for me. All this just to say that contrary to "A Separation", "Yi Yi" is pretty much a perfect family drama, but pointing out this mere evidence (in my eyes) is an insult to the taiwanese work, it's much! more than that. I see "Yi Yi" as a bigger, better, easier to live through, a truly satisfying cinematic experience.

"Yi Yi" is an epic drama story, the focus of attention are the life probations of a family where kids, adults and an old lady are all main characters of life and they go through many eye opening experiences that touch us, amuse us, humiliate us, intrigue us, makes us think... life lessons. It lasts for 3 hours and although this amount of time actually seems small for the thematic ambition of this work, Edward Yang manages to develop each theme, human relation, challenge with sensibility and intelligence, in a calm and confident pace and leave nothing left to say. There's indeed no need to say anything more, the premiss is fully fulfilled, by the time the movie ends we are left with the feeling of having watched something as epic, deep and bittersweet as life itself with an extra alluring spell carved by the wonderful cinematic mastery of Yang. The only thing I'd wish to be changed is the soundtrack, it's a bit too trivial, it almost cheapens the experience for me, but maybe I'm being excessively critical here, probably just a matter of taste. Fortunately it lasts little time and it's easy to forget... That's the only complain, all other technical aspects are more than good enough, the acting is excellent all around. What a wonderful movie, I highly recommend it!
Page 1 of 26