8.1/10
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100 user 118 critic

Yi Yi (2000)

Yi yi (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 16 December 2000 (Japan)
Each member of a middle class Taipei family seeks to reconcile past and present relationships within their daily lives.

Director:

Edward Yang

Writer:

Edward Yang

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13 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nien-Jen Wu ... N.J. (as Nianzhen Wu)
Elaine Jin ... Min-Min
Issei Ogata ... Mr. Ota
Kelly Lee Kelly Lee ... Ting-Ting
Jonathan Chang Jonathan Chang ... Yang-Yang
Hsi-Sheng Chen ... A-Di (as Xisheng Chen)
Su-Yun Ko ... Sherry Chang-Breitner (as Suyun Ke)
Chuan-cheng Tao ... Dada (as Michael Tao)
Shu-shen Hsiao ... Xiao-Yan (as Shushen Xiao)
Meng-chin 'Adriene' Lin ... Lili (as Adrian Lin)
Pang Chang Yu Pang Chang Yu ... Pangzi (as Yupang Chang)
Ru-Yun Tang ... Grandma (as Ruyun Tang)
Shu-Yuan Hsu Shu-Yuan Hsu ... Mrs. Jiang (as Shuyuan Xu)
Hsin-Yi Tseng Hsin-Yi Tseng ... Yunyun (as Xinyi Zeng)
Yung-Feng Lee Yung-Feng Lee ... Migo (as Yungfeng Li)
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Storyline

Each member of a family in Taipei asks hard questions about life's meaning as they live through everyday quandaries. NJ is morose: his brother owes him money, his mother is in a coma, his wife suffers a spiritual crisis when she finds her life a blank, his business partners make bad decisions against his advice, and he reconnects with his first love 30 years after he dumped her. His teenage daughter Ting-Ting watches emotions roil in their neighbors' flat and is experiencing the first stirrings of love. His 8-year-old son Yang-Yang is laconic like his dad and pursues truth with the help of a camera. "Why is the world so different from what we think it is?" asks Ting-Ting. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Taiwan | Japan

Release Date:

16 December 2000 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Yi Yi See more »

Filming Locations:

Tokyo, Japan See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,136,776

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,196,218
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The beginning scene of family taking wedding pictures are shot in Tunghai University in Taichung. The funeral scene is shot in The Affiliated Experimental High School Of Tunghai University in Taichung. The wedding dinner scene is in the Grand Hotel in Taipei. See more »

Quotes

Ota: Why are we afraid of the first time? Every day in life is a first time. Every morning is new. We never live the same day twice. We're never afraid of getting up every morning. Why?
See more »

Connections

References Mahjong (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Summer Time
Music by George Gershwin
Performed by Kelly Lee
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Do You See What I See?
20 November 2003 | by bobbyfrankySee all my reviews

Yang Yang the boy character in the film takes pictures to help those around him see what they cannot, and Yang the director takes pictures to help us see what we usually do not - that every moment of life is beautiful, deep, wonderful, rich.

Yang masterfully uses the everyday things of life on a least two levels - the literal and the figurative - beginning with the title of the film, which means literally "one one" (in Chinese) or "individual", but is presented as a Chinese "one" on the screen, followed slowly by another Chinese "one" appearing on the screen below it, which then becomes "two". (In Chinese, one is a single line, and two is two singles lines, one above the other.)

We are individuals, together. Our lives involve us, and others. Our lives involve relationships, get their meanings from relationships.

Relationships like that of little boy Yang Yang's encounters with girls, violent at first as they poke him from behind (in the back of his head, where he cannot see), and he pops balloons in their faces, scaring them. And then as the electricity builds between them, between Yang Yang and the girl in his school, just as in the nature film in the science lesson presented in the audio-visual classroom, passion as an electrical spark comes to his life.

There is Yang Yang's sister Ting Ting in the school of life too, with her ever-present potted plant that cannot seem to bloom. In class, she is told that overfeeding can cause it not to bloom - and Ting Ting herself tries too hard to bloom, longing for "music in her life" as she listens to the concert duet played by a man and a woman while she glances at her date, the boy called "Fatty" - he is slim but does he dine too much at life's banquet? (That question is answered later, as violent storms - storms of love, of life - pass overhead, not expected again "until Thursday".) Ting Ting wears white, and could be at her wedding, but she is not.

Their dad, NJ, does manage to find the music of his life once again when he encounters Sherry, the flame of his youth. They take a train back into time they remember as simple and romantic, but the memories of the past veil the complexities that existed then, and now, for the two of them.

NJ's wife Ming Ming wishes to escape. Her work colleague Nancy asks her, "You're still here?" to which she replies "Where can I go?"

Indeed, where can we go? No, we must stay and wake up each day, and try to remember that each day is a first time, that we never live the same day twice, as enchanting Mr. Ota, NJ's potential business partner, reminds him, and us.


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