Wang Li-ju, Ph.D. Student, Department of Taiwan Culture, Languages, and Literature, National Taiwan Normal University
How do men and women find love in today’s busy world? And once they find it, what makes them want to settle down and start a family? In Let’s Fall in Love, director Wu Tairen poses this conundrum through interviews with ten couples and fly-on-the-wall footage. The heart of the question also points to the director’s own self-reflection over the past few years. Let’s Fall in Love confronts men and women in marriage: getting used to one another, arguments, getting along with each other, more arguments. The filmmaker not only points her camera at the interviewees but also breaks with the assumption of her own neutrality to speak candidly to the camera about her experience as a woman, falling down and picking herself back up on the road of love. At the end of the film, the viewer suddenly realizes that these “adventures” also implicate the filmmaker’s fears and misgivings.
The opening scene appears to be a girls’ night out: the director and her closest female friends ask each other questions like, “Is it really so hard to find love?” Answer: “Not that hard!” This debate sets the scene for the documentary. We then follow a matchmaker named Chen as she shows us all manner of romantic combinations: older women and younger men love at first sight, off-and-on relationships, remarriage….
The whole process of meeting, getting to know one another, dating, getting married, and going through married life is like a long scroll that unfurls through the discussions and arguments of the ten couples. In between there may be interludes, such as relationships after divorce, affairs, and so on. These stories are used to probe modern marriages to find out how they endure, how they change, and how they heal. While the interviewees carefully restrain their feelings on camera, director Wu Tairen expresses hers very openly, with vivid emotion, honestly describing a woman’s approach to emotional self-healing.
At the end of the film, the director sums up her thoughts on love and family: “Rather than trying to find out what love is, it’s better just to learn to love one another.” This sentiment is contrasted with the director’s lone figure walking into the crowds and the footage of the couples she interviews. After the film ends, outside in the city the quest for love continues.
|Related Literary Themes：||Women’s Writing|