Film and TV Picks: Singular Screens, Painting With Light, Chinese drama Go Ahead

Chinese drama Go Ahead has at its heart an unconventional family brought together by love as much as circumstances. PHOTO: IQIYI


Since 2018, this film component of the Singapore International Festival Of The Arts has showcased bold films from all over the world.

This year, viewers can watch all seven films, curated by the Asian Film Archive, at the Oldham Theatre. Selected films can also be streamed on demand via Sistic Live Stream.

New tickets have been released for the popular Last And First Men (PG, 70 minutes, screening Oct 5, 8pm), the late Icelandic composer-turned-director Johann Johannsson's interpretation of Olaf Stapledon's influential 1930 science-fiction novel of the same name.

Johannsson, whose compositions adorn the soundtracks of films such as Arrival (2016) and Sicario (2015), also wrote the music for his own cinematic essay, set in a far-off future when evidence of the lost human race is contained in a set of concrete monuments.

Where: Oldham Theatre, 1 Canning Rise, and Sistic Live Stream.

When: Till Oct 11

Tickets: $12 for Oldham screenings, $8 for on-demand video. Bundles are available.

Info: Singapore International Festival Of The Arts website


National Gallery Singapore's festival of international films about art returns for its third edition. This time, however, it is all online and free.

Among the 20 short films and features in the programme lineup is the short film Tenebrae (G, 16 minutes) from Singapore film-maker Nicole Midori Woodford. It tells the story of Iris, who, with her mother, must move their possessions out of the Pearl Bank Apartments, which have been earmarked for demolition. It is an act fraught with meaning and memories for both mother and child.

Where: National Gallery Singapore's Painting With Light website.

When: Oct 2 to 25

Admission: Free

Info: National Gallery Singapore's Painting With Light website



4 stars

This drama looks at what defines a family and has at its heart an unconventional family brought together by love as much as circumstances.

Widower Li Haichao is very much a dream dad if not quite a dream boat. He is kept busy running a neighbourhood noodle shop, but never fails to prepare three meals for his young daughter Jianjian.

When the couple upstairs - policeman Ling Heping and wife Chen Ting - keep having fights, Li invites their troubled son Ling Xiao home for meals. Wrecked by guilt over the death of her daughter, Chen later walks out on the marriage and leaves behind her son.

Another boy, He Ziqiu, ends up living with Li after his single mother He Mei - whom Li is introduced to by a matchmaker - leaves the boy in his care.

The early episodes of this drama are suffused with charm - actor Tu Songyan radiates warmth as Li, who loves cooking and taking care of children. The young actors playing the children are naturals, especially the two boys who managed to convey their characters' feelings of hurt.

The show's writing is a cut above the rest, with its poignant observation, for example, on how people drift apart and are left with little to say to each other - and this awkwardness is often amplified by instant messaging tools.

This article has been edited for clarity.


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