They’re too tacky; they’re long winded; the Taiwanese accent annoys me – is what I usually say to deflect anybody who had the death wish of trying to ‘convert’ me to Taiwanese dramas. At least that is what I would have said, before Our Times just dropped from the heavens out of nowhere and pounced on me, pushing me into this big pool of feels and conflicted emotions, leaving me gasping, overwhelmed – but so desperate for more.
If you haven’t already heard about it, Our Times is gonna be the next BIG thing. In fact, it already is. It’s like the Power of High School Music has struck again – only this time, it’s Asian, with half the cast-size, and with a much more humble wardrobe (See: Sharpay). Oh, and there’s also almost no singing involved, although the film does boast a KICK-ASS soundtrack, that I’d bet is among the Top 5 songs on the playlist of just about Every Teenager Ever.
And with reason, too. The song isn’t spectacular, or anything new – it’s just another variation of the typical Asian Romance Ballad, if you get what I mean. But it’s effective, its’ familiar, and it gets. to. you. It’s methodical, but yet is on constant replay in your mind, accompanying every heart-wrenching scene that plays out in your head as you recall them – days, or even weeks, after the movie.
If there’s anything more perfect than the soundtrack, it’s the dialogue. The actors’ lines come off as insignificant and merely a part of normal everyday conversation at first, until you realise their significance later in the film. The words then hit you, hard. You’ve never heard more poignant dialogue, and personally, I probably wouldn’t have felt this way if not for the Taiwanese accent, which to me, made the delivery of the lines so much more memorable and close to heart. (Ironic, since I’m not even Taiwanese.) Or maybe it was because the movie was in Chinese, and while my love for Chinese was always secondary to English, there will always be this little corner in my heart that can only be touched by Chinese speech. Ah, the glory of Mother Tongue.
Of course, all these elements played only supporting roles. What truly shined was the cast, who performed nothing short of flawless. That applies to the two main leads, at least. It’s no question that the breakthrough star of this year is Talu Wang（王大陆）, whose popularity just shot to the stars with his portrayal of Hsu Tai-yu （徐太宇）. We also couldn’t ask for a more appropriate Truly Lin（林真心）, played by the adorable Vivian Sung（宋芸桦）. The leads had excellent chemistry, and if you watched the movie and are fully on board the ship, you absolutely HAVE to watch all their interviews. They’re just as cute off-screen as on, if not more!
By now, traces of my true intent for this post are probably everywhere – I really wrote this just to spazz. Note how there’s close to no objectivity in this whole blogpost; I’m really just another die-hard fan of this movie, that’s trying to pretend I’m not. This movie made me feel for things I really don’t care for, made me feel nostalgic towards past memories I don’t have, and opened me to the new world of Taiwanese, or Chinese productions in general, that I was always passive towards. And most importantly, it made me search high and low in my heart, for a vacant spot to squeeze this Taiyu X Zhen Xin pairing into it, amongst the many other OTPs I already have. Don’t be ashamed that you’re one of the many, Movie, be proud that you will be a cherished memory from now on.
To the memories I never had;
To Our Times.