Watch Apart Together
- 1 hr 36 min
The movie "Apart Together" from 2010 brings to light a piece of history that is little-known outside of China. Set in the present day, it tells the story of a group of Chinese soldiers who are reunited with their Taiwanese families after over 50 years of separation. The film interweaves the personal stories of the characters with the political and social context of this period of history, revealing the complex emotions that arise from reunion and the deep bonds that endure even in the face of political division.
The film opens with a group of elderly Chinese veterans being hosted in Taiwan by their former enemies, the Nationalists. The veterans are in Taiwan to search for their loves from decades ago, and to try to make amends for the political turmoil that drove them apart. Duocuo (Ling Feng), one of the veterans, is reunited with his former fiancÃ©e Qiao Yu'e (Lisa Lu), who is now a grandmother. The moment they see each other for the first time, it is clear that their love has never faded. They both ache to know what might have been if history had been different.
Their reunion is complicated by the fact that Duocuo is married to another woman, and Qiao Yu'e has her own family. But they cannot help being drawn to each other, and their unspoken feelings are palpable. The film captures the quiet moments where they reminisce about their past, sharing memories and photos of the times they spent together. These scenes are juxtaposed with flashbacks to the 1940s, when they were both young and in love. The contrast between their youthful idealism and the trials and tribulations they faced later in life is heartbreaking.
Throughout the film, the veteran characters interact with the people they left behind in Taiwan, exploring the complexities of identity and loyalty in a time of political strife. The film highlights the deep connections between ordinary people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, and emphasizes the need for reconciliation and forgiveness.
Director Wang Quan'an handles the film's themes with subtlety and nuance, creating a quiet and meditative atmosphere that is both nostalgic and melancholic. The film's color palette is muted and evocative, with a focus on natural lighting and long takes that allow the audience to immerse themselves in the characters' contemplative moods.
The performances are outstanding, especially Lisa Lu's portrayal of Qiao Yu'e. Her nuanced performance captures the character's quiet strength and resilience, as well as her yearning for the past. Feng Ling's performance as Duocuo is similarly impressive, offering a nuanced perspective on a character who is at once flawed and sympathetic.
Ultimately, "Apart Together" is a moving exploration of love, loss, and the enduring human connections that transcend politics and time. It is a poignant reminder of the power of forgiveness, and of the preciousness of the moments we share with the people we love. The film is a testament to the human spirit, and to the enduring power of hope in dark times.
Apart Together is a 2013 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 36 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.1.