Film reviews

The Many Repetitions of Hong Kong History

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There are few words fit to describe Blue Island (憂鬱之島), apart from “masterpiece.” The film stands out as an example of its genre, while also managing to be highly powerful and personal.

From No Man Is an Island
On April 22, 2022
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A Miao Church Choir Thrust into the Spotlight

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A Review of "Singing in the Wilderness" written in collaboration with Cinema Escapist, as part of coverage of the International Film Festival Rotterdam. Keep an eye out for more!

From No Man Is an Island
On April 16, 2022
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A Glance into the Everyday of COVID

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This is a No Man is an Island film review written in collaboration with Cinema Escapist, as part of coverage of the International Film Festival Rotterdam. Keep an eye out for more!

From No Man Is an Island
On April 12, 2022
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Gold Leaf Succeeds Where SEQALU and Island Nation Did Not

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A Review of Episodes One and Two of Gold Leaf (茶金)

From No Man Is an Island
On November 23, 2021
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A Powerful Look into the Struggles of Two Generations in China

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FATHER (爺爺和父親) is a standout documentary, whose strengths primarily derive from the revealing moments it manages to capture on camera. This is due to the fact that director Deng Wei is filming his father and grandfather as the documentary’s subjects.

From No Man Is an Island
On August 20, 2021
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FUNCTION AT THE JUNCTION: NOTES ON SUMMER OF SOUL

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I’m getting ready for the function at the junction And baby you’d better come on right now Because everybody’s gonna be there We got people comin’ from everywhere – “Function At The Junction,” Shorty Long, 1966 There’s a long, long legacy of Black folks gathering around food and funk, bbq sauce and song.

From Tasteful Rude
On August 20, 2021
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A Cross-Genre Thriller About Life After Death

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THE SOUL (緝魂) stands out among recent Taiwanese film as an effective and well-executed commercial thriller.

From No Man Is an Island
On July 27, 2021
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Review: “Born to Be Human” Interrogates Medical Violence Against Intersex Individuals

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Building off of Taiwan’s complex relationship with intersex issues stemming from the 1950s, 2021’s "Born to Be Human" brings light to contemporary misunderstandings of intersex people and the continued medical violence they face. The film proves an emotionally harrowing look at the medicalization of the gender binary through the lens of intersex rights.

From No Man Is an Island
On July 16, 2021
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Review: “Hotel Iris” Exhibits Transgressive Love…and Taiwan-Japan Amity

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What happens when "Fifty Shades of Grey" meets Taiwan-Japan relations? Well, probably something like "Hotel Iris," a Taiwan-Japan co-production that just premiered at the 2021 Osaka Asian Film Festival.

From No Man Is an Island
On July 13, 2021
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A Beat Ahead or Behind of the World

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A Review of My Missing Valentine (消失的情人節)

From No Man Is an Island
On July 9, 2021
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‘Zola’ is the Only Movie

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Who you gonna be tonight

From Popula
On July 9, 2021
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Love in the Shadows of Macau’s Casinos

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A Review of Madalena (馬達·蓮娜), a romance between two working-class immigrants to Macau from China. Ultimately, the film provides an effective, if dramatized, look at the lives of the working class as they eke out a bare existence in the shadows of the mega-casinos that Macau is best known for.

From No Man Is an Island
On July 1, 2021
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Movie Review: Green Girl: Greta

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Tension between Thunberg’s genuine wishes and her being the symbol of the overall climate movement and institutions’ stubborn refusal to act is at the very core of the film. The most successful and often poignant moments of the film is for us to understand the emotional context of what Thunberg famously said in conferences, in explaining Thunberg’s frustration and anger in her speeches.

From No Man Is an Island
On June 29, 2021
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