Jennifer Lee played by the always excellent Cherie Cheung ( Ringo Lam`s Wild Search & John Woo`s Once a Thief) has saved for two years, to further her studies in New York. Also she wants to reunite with her boyfriend Vincent; (Danny Chan) they will further their studies together and live the fairy-tale life in New York City. Such a perfect plan, her Mum has even got her a guide in the city, her streetwise cousin Figuredhead played by the always engaging Chow Yun Fat. He goes by a few other names in the film, the most popular of these is Figgy, and this is what he is mainly called by the locals. Figgy picks Jenny up from JFK airport, takes her back to where he stays, where he has arranged for her to have the apartment/room above his. The next day Jenny asks Figgy to take her to the train station to meet Vincent off the train from Boston. It`s here that she sees Vincent with another woman. This crushes Jenny and her American dream, but she has Figgy to lookout for her, to take care of her. What follow is one of the best and most touching heartfelt romantic tales, as they start to grow as friends; stronger feelings for each other develop as they navigate the city that never sleeps and their everyday lives. Will they say how they truly feel to each other before life and the city gets in the way?
Written and directed by Mabel Cheung An Autumn`s Tale is all heart and a wonderfully made romantic drama in every way, from the mesmerising and engaging two main leads Cherie Cheung & Chow Yun Fat. The writer director draws a lot from Woody Allen, very influenced by his early New York films. The choice of shots and cinematography of New York really does show a nice homage to Allen`s films. There`s nothing wrong with that, we all have directors and writers we are influenced by. Though this is A Hong Kong film and of course it`s done with a Hong Kong romantic drama twist. There are a few subplots running through the film, Chow and his friends beating up a gang because they are extorting money from his friend`s restaurant. Chow`s constant gambling and drinking gets in the way of his relationship with Jenny but she loves him and he loves her. Will his dream of opening his own restaurant come true? The film is very well paced with a few standout scenes. My favourite scenes are, Jenny with the family that she babysits for, plus those that are just her and Figgy talking and hanging out. One of the best of these is when they see Vincent and Jenny asks Figgy how she looks. The conversation that follows as they walk is just amazing to watch. The film is well written and directed; you can see that this brings out the best in the performances form all. As a friend said 'you could watch Chow paint a wall and still find it engaging'. He just oozes cool he has a natural presence for acting plus so much screen charisma, he can be breath-taking to watch. I think Cherie Cheung matches his performance and more in An Autumn`s Tale. This is why you are drawn into their emotional journey their world from the start…
Playing as part of the Focus Hong Kong film festival that runs from the 25 to 29th of January An Autumn`s Tale has been beautifully restored in 4k, and is a must for all fans. If like me you missed this gem back when it was first released. Do yourself a favour get to the cinema and watch one of the best romantic films I`ve ever seen. With what has to be on screen one of the best ending scenes and dialogue on film. Chow Yun Fat`s last lines are worth the price of the ticket.
Tickets and more information: https://focushongkong.uk