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30分鐘戀愛 (2004)
Love Trilogy

Reviewed by: JohnR
Date: 06/18/2005
Summary: Lovely, warm, intelligent film.

A study of love and marriage: is it worth it or not? Three couples are reviewed. The first an "old" married couple of seven years (Francis Ng, who's always good, and Anita Yuen, one of my favorite acrtresses who makes a very welcome return and shows she's still got it in spades) who constantly quarrel and have a hard time communicating. They seem to genuinely care for each other while driving each other nuts. I hope there are directors out there who noticed this film and will put these two in a vehicle of their own. My only regret in this movie was that I couldn't see more of them.

The second couple haven't been married long and appear to be heading down different paths, which really comes to a head when she finds herself pregnant.

The third couple is from Korea. They are dating and don't appear to make a very good match. She seems to be a material girl while he's got his head in the clouds as he heads to Tibet.

They are all observed by their tour guide, an expert on love whose knowledge comes from novels. While able to dispense advice to the couples, she has a difficult time attempting a loving relationship herself due to her fear that she'll find love is an illusion. An unbearable fate for a woman who is in love with love.

This may all sound mundane, but it's handled with intellligence and wit. The writing is excellent, the acting and directing top notch. This is a wonderful film that I can't recommend highly enough.

Reviewed by: bkasten
Date: 02/10/2005

While it certainly sounds like a potentially interesting story: three couples (HK, Mainland and Korean) who go to the same mainland vacation resort spot where their respective relationships and their concomitant problems are examined and tested; it is not a particularly original one.

The story here is told through three shorter vignettes covering each couple with partially overlapping timeframes, and then moves into a fourth, longer and completely different, denouement-like vignette. The vignettes and characters are all tied loosely together through the lonely and bookish tour guide character. Again, not an altogether novel approach...but interesting enough.

The first three vignettes are well done--the third especially so--and they are believeable so as to elicit enough emotional connection to the characters to carry one into the rather unpredictable fourth vignette where the movie truly blossoms into particularly well acted and beautifully filmed artful examination of cross-cultural love under difficult circumstances--a subject that strikes particularly close to home for me.

I highly recommend this film.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: barrst
Date: 12/26/2004
Summary: Third part of trilogy is the best

This is the story of three couples and a tour guide. The couples all visit a Chinese vacation spot. The first couple (Francis Ng and Anita Yuen) is from HK and has been married for seven years and fight all the time. The second couple is from the mainland and has been married for one year. The third couple is from South Korea and is just dating. Ruby Lin plays a tourguide who is bookish and a scaredy cat in love.

Sadly, only the third part is really enjoyable, with some good comedy and sweet romance on tap. I'd not seen Ruby Lin act before but she does a good job with her role.