Youth Screen 5 articles

Youth

2017

Youth Poster
  • Watching young idealists from the past age into the present is a hard sight indeed. But the film’s best energy comes from the thrilling staging of ballet rehearsals, the camera nostalgically ogling young women with rifles and short shorts prancing with military rigidity, the group fervor effortlessly contagious.

  • The movie’s depiction of cultural change is tidy to the point of being facile, which isn’t to say it’s ineffective. . . . As a straight, sentimental melodrama, “Youth” works well. While there are a lot of conventional tropes, the cast enacts them with such fresh, tenderhearted sincerity that they regain some power.

  • Based on this film . . . I can understand why Feng is sometimes called "China's Spielberg." Youth is formally impressive and heavy-handed: it's clearly designed to be a crowd-pleaser. Like Steven Spielberg, Feng balances humanism and period spectacle in a seductive manner, immersing viewers in the historical setting while forging strong emotional bonds with the principal characters.

  • What we’re left with is the story of two people who knew each other often in their youth, but only really became friends years later, though they would met only a few times, years apart. Or rather, it’s the story of a person who knew two people, once. It’s a warm, at times lovely film packed with stirring music and dance and at least twice the humanity of The Thousand Faces of Dunjia.

  • Mainland Chinese cinema is bloated with youth romances wallowing in ’90s nostalgia, yet this pivotal stage in life has never appeared as pure, beatific and cruel as depicted in “Youth,” the latest from Chinese box office king Feng Xiaogang. Tracking the tempestuous fates of a People’s Liberation Army (PLA) dance troupe from the Cultural Revolution to the ’90s, the film serves as a paean to idealism and endurance, yet the word “heart-breaking” comes to mind scene after scene.

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