Magazine article Screen International

Takao Dancer

Magazine article Screen International

Takao Dancer

Article excerpt

Dirs/scr: Ouchul Hwang, Ho Wen-shing. Taiwan-Japan. 2013. 100mins

A romantic drama that is strong on style and French New Wave references, the ambitious co-production Takao Dancer (Da gou wu) is a film of mixed pleasures as it traces the interweaving relationship between three Taiwanese from their younger years to their more fraught adulthood.

It is a partly experimental film, but one that hints at talent to watch from the filmmakers.

This triangle of love and tragedy may well be a familiar tale, but director/screenwriters Ouchul Hwang and Ho Wen-shing combine well to come up with a film that it rich in melodrama, though rather lacks an emotional resonance. The film had its world premiere at the Tokyo International Film Festival.

Friends from childhood, Chi (Ed Pan), Yi (Kly Huang) and Kong (Yu-ting Kuo) are close, despite the fact that Chi and Yi are from poor families, while Kong is from a wealthy backgeound. When a plan to make money to try and help Yi's singing career goes badly wrong through no fault of his own Chi is goes on the run from murder, theft and arson charges.

As an adult he turns to using his diving skills to loot from shipwrecked vessels at the bottom of the Taiwan Strait, and finds himself hunted by Kong, now a police detective who lives Yi. …

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