A romance between opposites, Eating Air follows the lives
of two teenagers during the hottest month in the history of
For Boy, breaking into bridal shops under moonlight is as
wildly exciting as taking Girl on her first motorcycle spin
through the blinding fluorescent tunnels of the CTE.
For Girl, hurtling down the highway faster than the speed
of sound is as intoxicatingly firghtening as wondering where
Boy rushes off to every time he receives a page at midnight.
About the joys and pangs of teenage love, Eating Air seeks
the delirious madness that makes 18-years-olds an age invincible
to low fuels, fists and oil puddles on the road. Eating Air
is about a boy, a girl, a motorbike and no brakes.
film critic Kelvin Tong and award-winning creative director
Jasmine Ng definitely schooled the locals on how to make movies
with Eating Air. Eschewing the tested formula of tired social
commentary and loathsome urban alienation, the duo brought
an excellent addition to the local film cinema history with
a gutsy essay on male companionship, innocent love and being
Heng played the role of his career as Boy, a skinny Ah Beng
with wild comic kung-fu hallucinations caught between the
disasters wrought by his best bike buddy Ah Gu and the love
interest Girl. The directors probably wanted Alvina Toh to
breathe some precociousness to the film material with her
wide-eyed presence, but she did not cope well with her role,
the failings of the amateurish cast were doubtlessly anticipated
by the directors, hence the story is light on the emotions
and heavy on dramatic stylized scenes. The similarities and
struggles precipitated by Boy’s relationship with Ah
Gu and Girl are modestly highlighted through the use of recurring
gestures and the erotic symbol of the motorcycle (or rather
the riders’ postures atop a motorcycle) without unnecessary
embellishments. Eating Air is praiseworthy because its realistic
dialogue and unpretentious storyline augmented the core themes
of the movie instead of detracting from them.
SPECIAL FEATURES :
The Special Collector’s Edition
contains the theme song music video, a breathy bittersweet
number by Juliet Pang; the theatrical trailer; cast audition
snippets as well as some background information for directors
Kelvin Tong and Jasmine Ng.
exceptional tracks from the movie soundtrack produced by Murmur
Music are also included, running the gamut from wistful themes
to loud affairs by the band formerly known as the Boredphucks
to the obligatory Hokkien ballads and techno mixes. The music
managed to outdo the movie here and it is the sole reason
for the 5 star DVD rating.
The visual transfer faithfully reproduces the imperfections
of the 1999 film and the audio track is available in Dolby
Digital 2.0. By the way, the decidedly low-end technical specifications
of the DVD actually added to its flavour.
by Lim Mun Pong