That Day, on the Beach

(Hai tan de yi tian)

  • Introduction

    Weihong Bao is associate professor in the Department of Film and Media and the Chinese Program of the East Asian Languages and Cultures Department, UC Berkeley.


Sylvia Chang, Terry Hu, Hsu Ming, Lieh Lee,

A film of epic scope, That Day, on the Beach had an enormous impact in Taiwan. Its narrative scale, multiple intersecting stories, and self-reflexive mode marked the film as something entirely new for Chinese cinema. A focus on the emotional lives of two women, and their implicit rejection of patriarchal dominance, was considered taboo-breaking. In the framing story, Tan, a concert pianist living abroad, is contacted in Vienna by her old friend Lin (the superb Sylvia Chang), now a successful businesswoman, and the two get together to talk over old times. Seamless flashbacks reveal the histories of both friends. . . . Identity and values are the underlying themes, shifting in time as experience molds each woman in her journey of self-discovery. Cinematography by Christopher Doyle gives the film a dreamy beauty.

Barbara Scharres, The Film Center, Chicago
  • Edward Yang
  • Wu Nien-Jen
  • Christopher Doyle
  • Chang Hui-kung
  • Mandarin
  • with English subtitles
Print Info
  • Color
  • DCP
  • 166 mins
  • Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute
  • Golden Princess

Event Accessibility

If you have any questions about accessibility or require accommodations to participate in this event, please contact us at or call us at (510) 642-1412 (during open hours) with as much advance notice as possible. More information on accessibility services.