I just finished watching this movie, and it is impeccable. It is brilliant and beautiful and wow. Ang Lee said (or at least, the promotional materials said that he said) “I don’t direct a movie, I let it direct me.” Watching this masterpiece I could see how one man cannot create such a thing, he can only say yes to it as it unfolds.
I worked on the film as an office PA, and now, looking back at that time and realizing that this was what Ang had in his head, I now relate very differently to the struggles and trials in making the film.
The film neatly caps a two-day discourse I’ve been having with several friends about the ineffable nature of reality and self. Words are by nature categorical and simplifying, but because film circumscribes an experience rather than a concept, it can come in some ways come closer. And a film like this one, I felt, hovered around a deep and inexpressible truth. And perhaps that is what makes the beauty of Ang’s films so sublime — there is a sense that the filmmaker knows this truth, expresses it in every inch of bifurcated celluloid, and would give it voice if only it had a name.
Watch the movie.