New York Times - 10/04/2000
"...[A] lovely, absorbing film....The work of a master in full command of the resources of his art..."
Entertainment Weekly - 12/22/2000 Ranked #4 in Entertainment Weekly's "Lisa Schwarzbaum's BEST MOVIES OF 2000" -- "[Chang is] natural and delightful....Profound..."
Rolling Stone - 10/26/2000
"...A marvel of delicacy and humor..."
Total Film - 05/01/2001
"...It's a well-acted, masterfully structured film and Yang's compassion for his characters fills every gracefully photographed frame..."
Sight and Sound - 04/01/2001
"...[A] wonderful film....In a film of superb ensemble work, Wu Nianzhen's performance as NJ is a standout..."
Los Angeles Times - 12/01/2000
"...A wise and gentle comedy of manners....YI YI investigates the entire melody of life....It's a delicate film, but a strong one, graced with the ability to see life whole..."
USA Today - 05/18/2001
"...[A] three-hour jewel from Taiwan about a family in crisis....A must-see..."
Premiere - 09/01/2006 4 stars out of 4 -- "[A] breathtaking film....Director Edward Yang eschews histrionics and melodrama to capture a far more affecting truth."
Focusing on a typical family--parents, two children, and an elderly grandmother--living in a small apartment in Taipei, YI YI (A ONE AND A TWO) is about the patterns of daily life. It includes a wedding, a funeral, a first date, a last date, a birth, and a death. The film follows each member of the Jian family carefully, giving each one equal time, completely developing each character. NJ (Wu Nienjen), the father of the family, struggles with a dead-end job at a technology firm while reexamining his marriage when he meets his high school sweetheart, Sherry (Ke Suyun), after 30 years. NJ's teenage daughter, Ting-Ting (Kelly Lee), has a selfless demeanor and a naive interest in everything, which diffuses the complexity of her high school life. Her little brother, Yang-Yang (Jonathan Chang), is an adorable five-year-old troublemaker who's in love with a pesky girl in his class. And Yang-Yang's mother, Min-Min (Elaine Jin), grieves for her dying mother (Tang Runyun) while coping with her own middle age in a rapidly maturing family.
Edward Yang, director of 1991's A BRIGHTER SUMMER DAY, presents a careful, direct, meticulously photographed film with YI YI. Brassy shots of Taipei reflected in the windows of a moving car are offset with slow choreographed sequences using the streetlights to narrate little moral tales. Perhaps the most powerful gem in this film is the magical character of Mr. Ota (Issey Ogata), NJ's Japanese business associate, whose optimistic life perspective will inspire and delight YI YI's viewers.
Family Life |
Theatrical release: October 6, 2000 (NY Film Forum).
YI YI premiered at the New York Film Festival in September 2000.
John Anderson, Gene Seymour, and Jan Stuart of Newsday, Matt Zoller Seitz and Godfrey Cheshire of the New York Press, The Second Annual Village Voice Film Critics' Poll, Stephen Holden and A.O. Scott of the New York Times, Andrew Sarris of The New York Observer, Newsweek, Film Comment, and Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly, all named YI YI (A ONE AND A TWO) one of the top 10 films of 2000.
Time Out New York's Stephen Garrett voted YI YI number one out of the top 10 films of 2000.
The National Society of Film Critics named YI YI Best Picture.
The Chicago Film Critics Association nominated YI YI for Best Foreign Language Film.
The Second Annual Village Voice Film Critics' Poll named Edward Yang Best Director and awarded him Best Screenplay.
YI YI (A ONE AND A TWO) finished second in both the Best Picture and Best Foreign Film categories of the Boston Society of Film Critics 2000 Awards.
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association and the New York Film Critics Circle awarded YI YI (A ONE AND A TWO) Best Foreign Film.
YI YI (A ONE AND A TWO) won the Prix Moussinac (best foreign film released in Gaul) from the French Union of Film Critics.