Dir: Celine Song, 2023, USA, English and Korean, 1hr 46 mins, Cert: 12A
Sun 8 October // 17:00
Tickets: £5 (full)
An aching, deeply romantic debut feature from playwright Celine Song (Endlings), Past Lives is a love story — indeed, several — told across three moments in time.
A budding childhood romance between Nora and Hae Sung, classmates at a primary school in Seoul, ends abruptly when Nora’s family emigrates to Canada. Twelve years later, Nora, now a playwriting student in New York, notices that Hae Sung’s been searching social media for her. They reconnect online, begin talking frequently, and even imagine a reunion. But another dozen years pass before they finally meet over a few fateful days during his visit to New York. Although their lives have changed dramatically, they remain bound by a wistful connection.
Song’s artful aesthetic and profound character writing, and the spellbinding performances she draws from Greta Lee, Teo Yoo, and John Magaro (whose fates intertwine) explore love, identity, and “In Yun,” a Korean notion of fate stemming from two people’s connection in a past life.
"A movie that liberates your tears and makes you fall in love with it. It is almost assuredly predestined to be the single best movie you see this year." Rolling Stone