Coming Home ★★★★½

As a huge fan of Yimou's Hero and Raise the Red Lantern, I knew I would enjoy Coming Home. What I didn't know is that I would like it for completely different reasons.

While his earlier works (at least the ones I've seen) are great because of their aesthetics and technical achievements, particularly with his use of sound, Coming Home is more notable for its narrative. This isn't to say the techniques are not there - the sound is outstanding and the visuals, though bleak, are effective - but that the narrative is so much more enticing than the others.

During China's cultural revolution, Feng (Li Gong) and Li (Daoming Chen) are seperated. Escaped after a decade, Li returns, however their daughter Dandan (Huiwen Zhang) will not allow the two to meet. When Li is sent to a prison camp, Dandan cuts her father out of all of the family pictures, causing Feng to kick her out of the house. A few years later, Li is released from prison camp, only to come home and find that Feng has a rare form of amnesia and does not remember him.

Coming Home is both tragic and intensely hopeful. It is, perhaps, the most romantic film of the year and, while the ending may not be what one expects, it is as beautiful as it gets.