"When I can use one shot, I won't use a second one. But if you look closely, I often move the camera slightly, often when I'm following the characters. It does have to do with my theater training-there you don't have a camera and are dealing with real space and time issues which I've tried to carry over into my filmmaking."
When it's said that an artist-filmmaker, painter, poet, performer-“defines a generation,” it can either refer to his attempts to reflect on the behavior of his times on his canvas, or it can be mere fortunate happenstance.
What is it about the movies that make this medium so prone to hysterical paeans to itself? Just how often have lax critics dusted off that old standby, “a love letter to the movies,” in this century past? What face could launch so many professions of amour?
Tsai Ming-liang works too subtly and too organically to lay it out for us, but with What Time Is It There? he explores every worthy connotation of the word departure, from taking a trip away to taking the final, mortal bow; from making a substantive personal change to simply saying goodbye.