7.2/10
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27 user 78 critic

Lilting (2014)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 8 August 2014 (UK)
Trailer
1:45 | Trailer
A young man of Chinese-Cambodian descent dies, leaving behind his isolated mother and his 4-year male lover, who grieve but don't speak a lick of each other's language.

Director:

Hong Khaou

Writer:

Hong Khaou
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ben Whishaw ... Richard
Pei-Pei Cheng ... Junn (as Cheng Pei Pei)
Andrew Leung Andrew Leung ... Kai
Morven Christie ... Margaret
Naomi Yang ... Vann (as Naomi Christie)
Peter Bowles ... Alan
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Storyline

In contemporary London, a Cambodian-Chinese mother mourns the untimely death of her son. Her world is further disrupted by the presence of a stranger. We observe their difficulties in trying to connect with each other without a common language as, through a translator, they begin to piece together memories of a man they both loved. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Mandarin

Release Date:

8 August 2014 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Dallam See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,567, 28 September 2014

Gross USA:

$27,054

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$247,377
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmed in 3 weeks. See more »

Quotes

Richard: If you think about it, we're constantly coming out to people; so, really, you should be good at it.
Kai: If only she liked you. It'd make this a lot easier, but for some reason she thinks you're a dick.
Richard: You love this dick.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The EE British Academy Film Awards (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Ye Lai Xiang
Performed by Xiang Lan Li
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Echoes of Wong Kar Wai in this beautiful film
8 August 2014 | by dominic_brantSee all my reviews

Echoes of Wong Kar Wai resonate beautifully throughout this very moving and understated, and yet very funny film. It can be viewed as a study in grief and cross-cultural misunderstanding or even prejudice. Two people try to comes to terms with the death of the person they each love the most. They are on conflicting sides of desperate love triangle. Each seeks recognition, and each needs to place their love in, an unexpected, context. Each needs to be understood.

In many Wong Kar Wai films the actors speak to each other in different languages with seeming full understanding. It suggests a disjuncture between time, place and culture, where language, usually the unifying factor within the narrative, becomes the source of each character's isolation. Lilting is self-conscious in its language play and it works powerfully to both comic and emotional effect. This has the magic effect of bending time. Locations are practically sparse, but the film gives the feeling of having moved us quite literally around the world.

The film demonstrates that with translation, there is always something essential that is lost. This might be cultural sensitivity, the feeling that we understand when, actually, we do not. Thus, it questions the assumptions we all make. It might also be the feeling that we know something or someone when actually we do not.

This may sound a heady, difficult mix. Far from it.

The film is beautifully shot, and again we experience something of the camera work of Christopher Doyle (Wong Kar Wai's leading cinematographer) in the delicate and soft palate of colours, and subtlety of framing which are as evocative as the language play in evoking mood and location. Nothing is wasted in this film. Even landmark pieces of music (another Wong motif) sit perfectly within the cross cultural narrative.

This is a film I will watch again and not simply for the references to Wong Kar Wai, It's a seamless depiction of loss in a world of seeming falling borders.

I hope you enjoy the film as much as I have.


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