‘Someone in The Clouds’ is a romantic comedy which tries to speak about the impermanence of love. Directed by Mitch Lin and Gary Tseng, it is a retrospection about the idea of ‘true love’ derived from countless attempts to decipher the same.

Someone in the Clouds” is screening at New York Asian Film Festival

The romantic comedy deals with the couple Hsiao-pei and Chiung-nan who meet just as coincidently as any other film in the genre wants you to believe. Hsiao-pei carries on her family’s fortune-telling tradition, practicing it since she was a child. She used to give love-related advice to her female friends based on tarot cards and grew up with a know-it-all attitude about the same. It was all good to advise others, until she falls in a romantic situation herself based on her own fortune. She comes across the cocky Chiung-nan who gets attracted to her the moment he sees her and he asks her out. The rest of the journey is mostly about learning about the aspects of love while actually experiencing it.

I can get past the candy-flossed style being used, no matter how annoying it might be. But there is hardly any purpose for choosing the same-old style that feels dated every next second from the film. There’s nothing particularly inventive, to get the corniness either.

The lead performances, however, definitely save the film to some extent, so does the humor. The highly effervescent Jian Man-shu shines throughout the film in the role of Hsiao-pei, with her effortless presence with just the right amount of drama to drive the narrative. Steven Hao is also impressive as the male lead who tries to make the best out of his generic character. Their chemistry is efficacious. The one who outshines them both at times is Tsai Cheng-nan as the father who pulls the comedic punches expected from a veteran actor like him.

The humor is in abundance which keeps the ship afloat despite being dependant on the generic clichés of a romantic comedy. The cinematography is filled with popping colors that keep the expected bubbly and energetic feeling constantly till the end. The colorful palette is another benefit where the film scores in its production design department. The editing is just as flashy and exuberant as the corniness of the film demands.

None of these factors save this film from its mediocre script which never comes out of the generic tropes nor does offer anything inventive with its narration. While trying to comment on the fragility of the idea of love in regard to the tarot cards, it never comes out of its safe zone of comic elements to be a more aware drama. While portraying the heartbreaks or a sense of belonging, it churns out the same old formula. Besides, it feels rather weak in the dramatic moments which offer nothing new and as a result, feel forced. And the message is to keep the film thoroughly engaging. In the end, it remains to be just another corny romantic comedy which has nothing new to say.

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