Zui hao de shi guang (Three Times)
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Zui hao de shi guang (Three Times)
The film features three different stories of love and memory through three time periods, 1966, 1911 and 2005. The first, "A Time for Love," hinges on the meeting of soldier boy Chen with pool hall hostess May and his subsequent search for her. The second episode, "A Time for Freedom," deals with a courtesan tending to a Mr. Chang during the Japanese occupation of Taiwan. And the third episode, "A Time for Youth," centers on epileptic singer Jing who casually takes up with photographer Zhen while increasingly ignoring her female lover.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 86%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A ravishing triptych spanning a century of Taiwanese history, in which love remains eternally elusive."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Seen in isolation, the first episode has the most satisfying plot and the last the least. But the film's achievement lies mostly in the beautifully articulated similarities and differences among the three."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"Hou Hsiao Hsien is quite simply one of the world's premier filmmakers yet his films are lucky to play a few festival dates here in the U.S."
‑ Beth Accomando, KPBS.org
"Assembles all of the major settings of the last 20 years of Hou's career into a single portmanteau of miscommunication and frustrated ardor."
‑ Leo Goldsmith, Reverse Shot
"An emotional journey, a showcase for two fine actors, and a multifaceted picture of love."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"Three varieties of love: unfulfilled, mercenary, meaningless. All photographed with such visual beauty that watching the movie is like holding your breath so the butterfly won't stir."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"If you are easily lulled into a sensuous rhythm of pure cinematic languor, this will satisfy. If not, you may be banging your head against the back of your seat."
‑ David Noh, Film Journal International
"An emotionally understated giant of a love story."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"This is a fascinating exercise in utilising style to make subtle psychological and political statements."
‑ David Parkinson, Empire Magazine
"A film to get lost in, a fragmentary, impressionistic trilogy of fleeting moments of love that is one of the best films of the year."
‑ G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle
"Great cinema, pop romance that carries a special charge."
‑ Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune
"[Hou's] work gains significance due to his specifically tying this theme of love to Taiwan in particular, as opposed to just proposing a general essay on love."
‑ Jeffrey Chen, Window to the Movies
"Carefully crafted and bereft of dialogue, Three Times sets the bar high with its opening salvo but can't sustain the momentum."
‑ Michele Kenner, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"Hsiao-Hsien reinforces his excellent cinematography with a bold use of music, featuring The Platters' Smoke Gets In Your Eyes, but ultimately the running time could have been halved and he would still have made his point."
‑ Digby Lewis, BBC.com
More reviews for Zui hao de shi guang (Three Times) on Rotten Tomatoes