A Time to Live, a Time to Die

A Time to Live, a Time to Die

1985
Drama
2h 18m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 70.74% from 238 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(238)
Compact view
Compact view
Rated 07 Feb 2007
67
30th
More like A Time to Nap. In content, this movie isn't all that different from other films I enjoy. However Hou fails to bring his characters to life. Without an engaging story, I need something to grab on to, and Hou offers nothing but his own nostalgia. I was just waiting for something, anything, to happen that would capture my interest. The camera offered a few decent moments, but nothing amazing. And the music was too sappy, it added to feeling of being spoon-fed someone else's nostalgia.
Rated 08 Jan 2022
73
42nd
Beautifully shot, but too tedious and unimmersive to get anything more from it.
Rated 22 Aug 2022
65
29th
This kind of reminded me of the films of Terence Davies, though less aggressively sentimental and with less music. The similarities lay in the episodic presentation of childhood and memory. There are some poignant moments, but I ultimately think it's a bit too slow and doesn't really justify the pacing. It's one of those movies that you can recognize as well done, but is ultimately a bit boring.
Rated 08 Aug 2018
95
96th
A film in which the specific leads us to the universal, Hou's work here is among his best. Without highlighting moments that scream "subtext," Hou instead allows us to appreciate the film at the personal level, even as the unfolding narrative of Ah-hao's growth toward adulthood "progresses" into uncharted territory. This ultimately tragic movement mirrors the philosophical and societal "development" of the 20th century, where we are left staring at the corpse of a once-vibrant tradition.
Rated 01 Apr 2017
15
2nd
I don't give a fuck about his life. Uninteresting completely.
Rated 19 May 2020
75
83rd
As the title says, this is a film about living and dying. And the different ways we live and die, explored here with humour and compassion. The ending is particularly potent.
Rated 03 Apr 2011
82
67th
Meditative film about family struggles and growing up contrasted with Taiwan's parallel changes in social structure. It's rather slow and lacks the impact to justify the pacing, but still flows reasonably well and has a few impacting moments.
Rated 01 Mar 2008
86
77th
# 282
Rated 30 May 2023
3
28th
The most interesting element was seeing what life was like in that time and place, however, the story is ultimately boring and I could not grab on to anything throughout.
Rated 04 Nov 2023
86
80th
A Brighter Summer Day is the natural comparison point, and while I don’t think this reaches the operatic heights of that movie it’s still a superbly-told emotional piece which captures a time and place excellently and has several fantastic scenes and an ending that made me literally gasp!!!
Rated 19 Dec 2008
86
72nd
287
Rated 13 Apr 2012
79
70th
Primarily a film assembled together like clippings of memory paired with internal monologue, it managed to delicately craft a few interesting perspectives on the lives of 5 siblings in changing conditions. I felt a good sense of the characters - especially Ha-hou - through the cautious pacing, but the story was only mildly and intermittently engaging. The photography and lighting were occasionally wonderful, but I can't help but think that Hou has more to offer in his other films.
Rated 18 Apr 2018
35
19th
I really tried to appreciate this as laid-back reminiscing, but it is simply too superficial, humorless and ultimately boring.
Rated 13 Jan 2010
85
70th
302
Rated 30 Nov 2011
84
68th
#320

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