When Sun Meets Moon 某日某月 (2018) - Hong Kong
Reviewed by Andrew Chan (Film Critics Circle of Australia)
One of the best moments of the youth romantic film comes in the form of sending letters and the yearn and wait that comes with waiting for them in the pursuit of young love. Kathy Yuen and Daichi Harashima are excellent in their rawness and portrayal in capturing the innocence of young romance and all the loving and dreamy fantasy that comes with it. As usually there are obstacles, one rich one poor, one goes to boarding school and the other grounded and finally separated by the ties of immigration of the 90s. Having grew up in a similar era as the two protagonist, the happenings are easier to relate and the sweet interactions between the two and how hard they try to maintain their relationship despite all that is going on makes the film more convincing and heartwarming.
Kathy Yuen at the tender age of 30 is given her first leading role, acting almost 13 years her junior and does so with almost seamless and ease. Yuen looks far younger than her 30s outlook and in turn gives both a raw and innocence appeal that makes her pitch perfect for the role. Daichi Harashima, as we all remember from the child actor who simply stole the show in the tearjerker 2003’s “Lost in Time”. Playing closer to his age, his doggedly pursuit and persistence for this young love that can so easily fail in face of adversity is a joy to watch. We have also wonderful supporting leads in Aimee Chan, Maggie Shiu and Jackie Lui. Aimee Chan in particular shines as the teacher and friend who goes out of her way to inspire the young love.
All in all, the film does not breaks any real tradition, but it works as a heartwarming romance coming out of age story that easily resonance for those who enjoys growing up in the 90s, the days of letters and when the world was far less digital and convenience. What we get is at its core a simple romantic story that allow us to remember, think about to those days. Sometimes, we need this. Benny Lau also proving he is as a “hopeless romantic” as Wong Kar Wai in just his 2nd film.
I rated it 8/10