Director: Wee Li Lin
Cast: Kym Ng, Adrian Pang, Aaron Kao, Sonya
RunTime: 1 hr 40 mins
Released By: GVP
Official Website: www.goneshoppingthemovie.com
Day: 26 July 2007
READ OUR INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR WEE LI LIN
"Gone Shopping" is a darkly funny character
study of three eccentric urbanites who escape to the shopping
centers in search of a new frontier.
the repertoire is a tragically romantic 40-year-old tai tai
who desperately wants to be loved, followed by a feisty 8-year-old
girl who desperately wants independence and finally an angst
ridden 22-year-old 'Gen-Y' boy who desperately wants to find
his manhood. This motley crew lead audiences through a journey
of love, loss and lunacy in the heart of Singapore where they
find that their dreams can be bought and broken.
the midst of it all, they also cross paths with other creatures
of the mall, each of them with their own strange retail tales
It saddens me to say this, but Singaporeans are
a depressed lot. There’s this constant and desperate
search, for that elusive thing called happiness. And no thanks
to the bustling city we live in, we seek solace in the most
mundane of things like watching movies, eating at expensive
restaurants, and most undeniably, shopping at malls.
here you have it, a disheartening look at our sad little souls
in this local movie about urban alienation.
her feature directorial debut, Wee Li Lin directs local TV
host Kym Ng, newcomers Aaron Kao and Sonya Nair in a film
which brings three disconnected Singaporeans together in shopping
malls. Their distressed attempts to escape the harsher realities
of life play out coldly against the backdrops of the hectic
viewers would have a great time identifying shopping centers
like Tangs, Marina Square and the 24-hour Mustafa. But look
beyond these trivialities and you’d find a worryingly
reflective portrayal of urbanites we are all so familiar with.
unhappy housewife seeks solace in posh and classy shoes and
bags, Kao’s angst-ridden youngster searches for the
true meaning of love, while Nair’s idealistic kid is
faced with the not-so-nice truths in the cruel world. These
forlorn characters are played affectionately by the local
actors, some with more feelings than others.
the supporting characters are convenient caricatures of Malaysian
salesgirls, a heartless two-timing husband and an uncertain
girlfriend, they manage to entertain in an otherwise distraught
100-minute runtime of the film is easy to digest, with commendable
cinematography that showcases the bright lights and lively
streets of Singapore. The occasionally melancholic soundtrack
will grow on the more emotional viewer too.
talented Adrian Pang has a bit role as a salesman who crosses
paths with the Ng’s dejected tai-tai, and he effortlessly
slips into his role with ease and comfort. Watch out for the
sweet scene between him and Ng shot outside Tanglin Mall –
the dreamlike sequence will charm the most cynical.
may be an overdose of local works chronicling the lives of
miserable urbanites, but when you hear Ng’s voiceover
ala “Desperate Housewives” in the finale of the
movie, you’d realize that there is no way we can escape
this wretched cycle of depression.
only way is to head to those malls and buy, buy, buy.
alienation against the backdrops of shopping malls, this local
movie takes an honest look at a culture we are all familiar
Review by John Li