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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "He ni zai yi qi " or "Together")

directed by Kaige Chen
China 2002

I enjoyed this film. It reminded me of Zhang Yimou's 'Happy Times' in that it shows a window on modern Chinese culture. In fact it reminded me of a few Zhang Yimou films, with a smattering of comedy, diverse characters and strong familial bonding in the end. Saying that I wouldn't put it in Zhang's class. It was a little cloying and subtly geared towards Western exposure. The performances were excellent, if a little over the top at times, and the music was wonderful. Cinematography was very good as well, but I couldn't help but feel the plot was somehow disjointed, or maybe the editing was poor. The story left gaps that I don't think were intentional. I could put this down to the faulty subs on the DVD that I saw, so I won't take this into account too heavily. Interesting to see director Chen take a part in his own film.


Theatrical Release: September 10th, 2002 - Toronto Film Festival

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DVD Review: TVA Films -  Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution TVA Films - Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:58:20 
Video 1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio - 16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.50 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

Audio Mandarin (Dolby Digital 5.1) , DUB: French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Subtitles English, French (THESE SUBS ARE FLAWED), None

Release Information:
Studio: TVA Films / Wellspring

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.85:1

DVD Release Date: November 18th, 2003

Keep Case
Chapters: 20

Edition Details:

  • 4:3 interview with Director Chen (5:58)

  • French trailer

  • English Trailer

  • Mandarin trailer

This disc should be recalled, the transfer fixed and replaced. Three times (using three different players) the subtitles froze (at the exact same point) and will eventually freeze your machine (even did this on my computer DVD player) if they are not shut-off and then turned back on. The film continues but the subs are 'stuck'.  8 times I noticed spelling mistakes and 3 other times the subtitles were too long for the picture and entire words were completely cut-off. The picture is typically lack-luster, although anamorphic, but there is blurring during motion. This disc is unacceptable by any standards. they have ruined the presentation of this award winning film. out of     

Gary W. Tooze

Recommended Reading in Chinese/Hong Kong/Taiwanese Cinema (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

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FLAW: Subtitle FREEZE Samples (2nd capture is almost 2 minutes later and the same sub caption is up! )




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Gary Tooze

Mississauga, Ontario,