The good stuff
If you want to explore Hong Kong's upcoming talent and you don't mind shifting gears from time to time, then this one comes well recommended.
Visually Lover's Discourse is a stunning film, the soundtrack is solid but not too spectacular and the acting is all-round impressive.
At its best, Better Days is a very stylish, gripping and well-made drama. Sadly the way the bullying is handled feels a little flat, which carries through to a somewhat disappointing ending. It's a shame, because the performances are amazing, the cinematography is beautiful and the score is on point. Very good, but could've been better still.
Derek Tsang is a talented director, that much is certain. It's a shame his films have a tendency to get a bit too sentimental. Soulmate is a film driven by drama that keeps on piling up. A more considerate pacing and a less convoluted narrative would've greatly improved the film, if only he could edit himself down a little.
When Ansheng and Qiyue meet each other for the first time, they immediately feel they're going to be best friends for life. Their friendship is tested when Jiaming joins them. The two girls are attracted to the boy, and even when their lives starts to diverge, Jiaming continues to stress their relationship.
The cinematography is beautiful, and the performances are great. Zhou Dongyu is by far one of the biggest talents to have come out of China this past decade. The music is a bit too poppy and overbearing, whereas the plot is just too dramatic for my liking. The potential and quality is there, some of Tsang's films have already illustrated that, but Soulmate was just a tad too dramatic for me.