In Review: Days

There is ecstasy and anguish to the world as Tsai Ming-liang captures it, observing the sonorific isolation of existing in the modern metropolis in such films as Stray Dogs, his debut Rebels of the Neon God, and the surreal The Wayward Cloud. His latest, the queer longing microepic Days, is perhaps his most narrowly ambitious yet acutely emotional film, as much a chamber piece as it might be possible for him to make. The filmmaker has defined himself as a master of accumulation, molding narratives of few words but instead with powerfully synchronized imagery and sound, building to something overwhelming. The result, whether he delivers realism or allegory, are films whose feelings are impossible to reduce to easy descriptors. Words are insufficient in his films and for them, so naturally Days doesn’t require them to produce something profoundly moving. Nor, as Tsai Ming-liang sees it, does it take words for a fleeting moment of connection.

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