Movie Review: First Time

Based on the Korean movie titled "…ing", this film directed by Han Yan is about first love and familial love.

It is as dreamily perfect and bittersweet as celluloid romances go, complete with some (forgivable) cliches.

Hong Kong model Angelababy plays Shiqiao, a gentle university student with a muscle disorder and whose memories are slowly eroded away due to the medication.

For years, she's recorded her memories on Side A of a tape, dedicated to her high school crush, Gong Ning (played by Mark Chao), leaving Side B of the tape empty for him to record his thoughts.

The first hour of the film is the typical too-romantic-to-be-true courtship.

Her crush appears out of the blue to court her, running around town with her on piggyback to let her experience what jogging is like, and planning a quirky music performance to apologise for missing a date.

But the plot twists - or Side B of the story - is what earns this movie a good review.

Gong Ning is actually a bad boy rocker named Lü Xia, who was paid by Shiqiao's mother to let her experience first love.

His side of the story builds up to an unexpected and emotional climax that will leave weepy ones reaching for the tissues.

Rating: 4/5 stars

This article was first published in The New Paper.

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