in about 100 words or less
Taiwan 157m, Colour
Director: Hou Hsiao-Hsien; Cast: Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Sung Young Chen, Jack Kao, Li Tian-lu
A City of Sadness is a complex drama set in post-war Taiwan about a family’s experiences during the period of political upheaval when their country was released from Japanese rule, only to be further subjugated under Communist China. Though the Japanese departure is initially greeted with some optimism, the joy is short-lived, as human rights violations, corruption and murder become part of the daily life of the Lin family. Shedding light on the February 28 Incident, and the political terror that followed, A City of Sadness is an important reminder of this grim period in Taiwan’s recent past (Klaus Ming October 2016).