Alan Newnham’s review published on Letterboxd:
I'm sure we all know the feeling of discovering something or someone and only wishing you'd discovered them far earlier. This is how I feel about Edward Yang after watching my first film of his, which happens to be his final film.
Everything, from the pure poetry of the use of reflections in glass - showing us what is behind and in front, to the subtle and incredibly real feeling characters. Edward Yang has captured life at almost every angle.
The transitions between scenes that visualised the poetry of generations, the cycles of life, love, age, time, transitions, processes, unbeknown repetition, the first and lasts, the beginnings and the ends.
Conflicts and no longer being sure of what you believed so strongly in. I've read that Edward Yang was uncomfortable with the idea of his films being sold or distributed for money or profit (thus many of his films being difficult to source) due to his belief that it was not his 'primary purpose as an artist'. I can't pin exactly why I found that important, besides its portrayal through N.J's often occurring conflict to be true to himself and to be sincere. I guess it makes sense because I feel there's a strong conviction within this film, a conviction that's undoubtedly sincere and human and Yang expresses this successfully and beautifully.
Even at only half way through this film, I already knew I would watch this again one day, and then again and again.
"I want to tell him that I feel I am old, too."