Aided by some truly breathtaking cinematography, Yang Chao’s Crosscurrent is an hallucinatory experience that ultimately has far less to say than it thinks it does.
The film brings to mind more recent films by Terrence Malick as both his latest offerings and Crosscurrent fail to fully grasp the breadth of their intellectual and spiritual ambition; ambition is admirable, but it must be controlled.
Here is a drama of life and death that feigns depth and labours beneath the weight of its own lofty ideas; Yang Chao’s film is stunning to look at but ultimately confuses profundity with incomprehensible philosophical gesturing.
While mostly pompous pontification masquerading as poetics, Crosscurrent is the work of a bold director with an acute eye for extracting the most beautiful of images from his surroundings.
CAST: Qin Hao, Xin Zhi Lei, Wu Lipeng
DIRECTOR: Yang Chao
WRITER: Yang Chao
SYNOPSIS: A bereaved boat captain steers his cargo boat along the Yangtze River as a means of liberating his recently deceased father’s soul.
Crosscurrent was reviewed as part of One Room With A View’s coverage of the 66th Berlinale Film Festival, which runs 11-21 February 2016.