top of page
WIX25BBB.jpg
  • Writer's pictureOnepress tv

“Past Lives” Review

Guendalina Porta



A magical but not obvious film for lovers arrives in theaters. It is Past Lives, the debut of Celine Song, born in South Korea, but then emigrated with her family to Canada and now resident for some time in New York, in the United States, where she has become a recognized playwright.                                    

The film is inspired by his life. However, it is transfigured into a sort of sensorial and spatiotemporal journey, filtered by the intimate sphere. It always maintains a light and dreamy touch, without taking anything away from the depth of the introspective dimension, on the contrary. Divided into long sequences that seem like capsules, or muffled spaceships, it is also an ambient cinema, just as there is ambient music.

It is a very simple story of two people, which becomes unique when it manages to communicate an extremely complicated feeling, one that lies between regret, love, the desire to have also lived another life and that strange sensation given from wanting something that we know is impossible to have. It's not easy to describe in words and for this reason it's a concept that we don't often elaborate, but Past Lives makes it very clear by communicating it through lighting, editing, narration and acting.

Nora and Hae Sung are two deeply bonded guys, but at a certain point life divides them radically, there had been a fracture and two parallel universes crossed paths, generating a completely different story in a completely unexpected way, a clear break with the known temporal linearity. If we consider this, the sequence of the initial part, in which the two protagonists greet each other taking opposite paths - hers is all uphill - acquires a more subtle and profound meaning than a didactic metaphor would suggest at first glance. Just as the rhetorical or mannerist molasses, lurking because the filmmaker moves on a very thin wire like a tightrope walker, is always avoided: from the beginning, Nora and Hae Sung, still twelve years old, already say things to each other's faces with a somewhat crude frankness. And we can already perceive the anxiety of success and social oppression that, under the surface, runs through a film dominated by the intimate dimension.  Then, in sequences that manage to be miraculously slow and fast, fluctuating like we are while watching, we see the two boys find each other again thanks to the internet: Nora in the meantime has emigrated with her parents to Canada. The protagonists are now adults, but still very young. A new clear, somewhat crude break follows, requested by Nora. And here we are in New York - we are in the present, although the ever-suspended atmosphere makes everything fleeting - where Nora is a writer married to another artist, the American Arthur  and awaits the arrival of Hae Sung, who he decided to go and see her. Gradually a strange bond forms between the three.

Social media: A magical but not obvious film for lovers arrives in theaters. It is Past Lives, the debut of Celine Song, born in South Korea, but then emigrated with her family to Canada and now resident for some time in New York, in the United States, where she has become a recognized playwright. It is a very simple story of two people, which becomes unique when it manages to communicate an extremely complicated feeling, one that lies between regret, love, the desire to have also lived another life and that strange sensation given from wanting something that we know is impossible to have

#pastlives#celinesong#southkorea#unitedstates#gretalee#teoyoo#nora#haesung#


Comments


bottom of page