The democratization of Taiwan forms the backdrop of this engaging story of a love-triangle, that traces the paths of three schoolmates from their rebellious student days in 1985 (when the country was still under martial law) to the present. Mabel is in love with Liam, and although an affection between them seems obvious to Aaron as the group distributes magazines banned by the ruling Nationalist party, Liam remains aloof. Aaron, no dummy, swoops in at that point, but neither Aaron nor Mabel knows that the repressed Liam secretly loves him.
Flashing forward to long sections in 1990 and then 1997, the film shows how the dynamic among the three friends shifts along with the nation's politics. The cast-especially Lun's portrait of the long-suffering Mabel-is strong, the pop-music backbeat infectious and the sense of the passing years poignant. Even as freedoms grow, unrequited love remains stubbornly intransigent.
Synopsis written by: Ben Kenigsberg