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After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region All

Aaron Kwok (Actor) | Charlie Young (Actor) | Ian Iskandar Gouw (Actor) | Valen Hsu (Actor)
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After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
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Customer Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.4 out of 10 (5)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

Hong Kong New Wave director Patrick Tam finally returns with his new film After This Our Exile starring Aaron Kwok and Charlie Young. The film topped all other competitors at the Golden Horse Film Festival to win the Best Feature Film award. Following up his win with Divergence last year, Aaron Kwok was crowned the Best Leading Actor for the second consecutive year for his role in this film. Nine-year-old Ian Iskandar Gouw, who plays Aaron Kwok's son in the film, won the Best Supporting Actor award, becoming the youngest Golden Horse winner ever.

Aaron Kwok plays gambler Sheng, while Charlie Young portrays his wife who can no longer tolerate his violence and leaves the family. Sheng then forces his son (Ian Iskandar Gouw) to commit petty theft to simply survive. The child ends up in a juvenile detention center and does not meet his father again until 10 years later, when his innocent emotional attachment to his father has already been replaced by a more complex feeling mixing affection, disappointment, and despair. Director Patrick Tam aptly captures the nuances in a changing family in which the father tragically does not know that his shortcomings will eventually destroy the family. The carefully designed cinematography and classical music give the film a strong artistic flavor, probably explaining the film's popularity at international film festivals.

Tam first made his name with his daring 1982 work Nomad (starring Leslie Cheung, Cecilia Ip, Pat Ha, Ken Tong), but stopped directing after My Heart is That Eternal Rose in 1989. He has been involved in many notable films and did the film editing for Wong Kar Wai's Days of Being Wild and Ashes of Time. His recent project as the editor for Johnnie To's Election was seen as preparation for his return to the director's chair.

Note: This is the 120-minute Hong Kong theatrical edition.

© 2007-2024 Ltd. All rights reserved. This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Technical Information

Product Title: After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) 父子 (香港版) 父子 (香港版) 父子 (香港版) After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
Artist Name(s): Aaron Kwok (Actor) | Charlie Young (Actor) | Ian Iskandar Gouw (Actor) | Valen Hsu (Actor) | Kelly Lin (Actor) | Amanda Qin (Actor) | Chui Tien You (Actor) | HO KIM HONG | Lee Ping Bin 郭富城 (Actor) | 楊采妮 (Actor) | 吳景滔 (Actor) | 許茹芸 (Actor) | 林熙蕾 (Actor) | 秦海璐 (Actor) | 徐天佑 (Actor) | 何劍雄 | 李屏賓 郭富城 (Actor) | 杨采妮 (Actor) | 吳景滔 (Actor) | 许茹芸 (Actor) | 林熙蕾 (Actor) | 秦海璐 (Actor) | 徐天佑 (Actor) | 何剑雄 | 李屏宾 郭富城(アーロン・コック) (Actor) | 楊采妮 (チャーリー・ヤン) (Actor) | 呉景滔(ン・キントー) (Actor) | 許茹芸(ヴァレン・スー) (Actor) | 林熙蕾(ケリー・リン) (Actor) | 秦海璐 (チン・ハイルー) (Actor) | 徐天佑(チョイ・ティンヤウ) (Actor) | HO KIM HONG | 李屏賓(リー・ピンビン) 곽부성 (Actor) | 양채니 (Actor) | Ian Iskandar Gouw (Actor) | Valen Hsu (Actor) | Kelly Lin (Actor) | Amanda Qin (Actor) | Chui Tien You (Actor) | HO KIM HONG | Lee Ping Bin
Director: Patrick Tam 譚家明 谭 家明 譚家明 (パトリック・タム) Patrick Tam
Release Date: 2007-02-14
Language: Cantonese
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
Place of Origin: Hong Kong
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Sound Information: Dolby Digital 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: All Region What is it?
Duration: 120 (mins)
Publisher: Panorama (HK)
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1004542153

Product Information

* Screen Format: 16:9 Anamorphic Widescreen
* Sound Mix: Dolby Digital 5.1, 2.0
* Approx: 120 mins

Director: Patrick Tam

第1屆羅馬國際電影節 參賽作品
第11屆釜山國際電影節 參展作品









A part-time father but a full-time gambler, he had the looks, combined with his friends' respect. But that was a long time ago, before the gambling started. It's all gone, except for one thing: his smart, loyal and doting young son. In spite of fearing his father's violence towards his mother, the boy reveals her secret plan to leave them both. A severe beating ends with the boy's mother locked up. He eventually ends up alone with his father - forced to help pay gambling debts by becoming a petty thief. His resistance is futile, and he eventually ends up in a juvenile detention centre. During a visit, the boy leaves his father with a missing ear in a violent attack.A decade later, the now grown-up son returns to his hometown. As he walks the empty streets, he sees a man in the distance that might just be his father…
Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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This film has won 8 award(s) and received 12 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

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Professional Review of "After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

View Professional Review:
June 25, 2007

This professional review refers to After This Our Exile (DVD) (Director's Cut) (3-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
Having not made a film for 17 years, Patrick Tam's return to directing with After This Our Exile comes like an invigorating breath of fresh air to a stagnant Hong Kong film scene that is becoming increasingly reliant on the formulaic blockbuster action-crime thriller. A simple family drama with no doubt autobiographical elements, and set in Malaysia, it's the personal nature of the film more than anything that sets After This Our Exile apart from the usual Hong Kong genre material, and which has no doubt contributed to the numerous prestigious awards the film has garnered from the main Asian film festivals.

As the original Chinese title Fu Zi ("Father Son") indicates, the film is primarily concerned with the father-son relationship and the simplicity that this title implies is borne out in the manner that it is seen largely from the perspective of a young child. The child here is known as Boy (Gow Ian Iskandar), and he is caught in the middle of a rocky relationship between his father Sheng (Aaron Kwok) and his mother Lin (Charlie Yeung) who are not legally married. One suspects that the reason the marriage was not legitimised has probably a lot to do with Sheng's gambling problem. Being somewhat violent and short-tempered and owing a lot of money to local gangsters, Sheng often has to go on the run or into hiding and wasn't even present when Boy was born.

It's a situation that has become too much for his mother Lin. She has another lover who promises her the opportunity of a better life, but leaving a violent man is not easy and leaving her son behind is another problem since Boy has a stronger bond with his father. Nevertheless, when an opportunity presents itself, Lin makes her escape. With no mother and a father on the run, struggling to pay his rent and pimping for a prostitute he has met (Kelly Lin), the young Boy has to cope for himself more often than not, and doesn't exactly receive the right sort of guidance from his father.

The story is a rather straightforward and not particularly illuminating on the relationship between father and son, nor perhaps is it intended to be. Rather, somewhat like the recent Malaysian film Rain Dogs, After This Our Exile is a kind of coming-of-age film, a look back on a childhood lacking a proper upbringing, an absence of proper parental guidance and the negative influence of a father figure who is not the strong role-model that a young child needs to direct him on the path of life. The evocation of mood and location consequently becomes the most important aspect of the film and Patrick Tam has Mark Lee Ping Bing - the cinematographer for Hou Hsiao-hsien, Wong Kar-wai and Tran Anh-hung - to brilliantly depict the setting without imitating or appropriating the other director's distinctive styles. While there are certain similarities, in place of languid pans and minimal scripts, Tam's editing matches the dynamic of the film's script, dialogues and situations with rapid cuts to describe the violent outbursts of Sheng, with ellipsis and flowing movement to depict some sex scenes that are much more intense than we are accustomed to see in a mainstream Hong Kong film, bringing it all together to be representative from a particular perspective of childhood memory.

After This Our Exile is not a perfect film - the characterisation isn't particularly deep, the situations occasionally feel contrived and there are lulls and a certain amount of repetition in the almost three hour running time of the film (the film was trimmed back for its original Hong Kong theatrical release, but is presented in full here) - but there is also much to admire. The performances are strong - Aaron Kwok in particular playing against the more glamorous type of role he is better known for in films like Divergence - the evocation of mood is impeccable in the hands of Mark Lee Ping Bing, there is good use of music, and the editing by Tam (celebrated for his editing work on films such as Days of Being Wild, Ashes of Time and Election no less) carries it along marvelously with an appropriate tone and sense of pace. Moreover, it's a film that is admirably lacking in calculation, telling the story it wants to tell rather than the one the Hong Kong film-going audience might expect, and consequently it touches on real emotions and passions, and succeeds in arousing them in the viewer as well.

After This Our Exile, the Original Full-length Director's Cut is released in Hong Kong by Panorama. The film is presented across two dual-layer discs, with the extra features included on a third disc. The set is in NTSC format and is not region encoded. The set is nicely packaged, the fold-out digipak held within a sturdy slipcase which also contains a collector's booklet of moody stills from the film.

The video transfer is very good, but inconsistent. Spread across two dual-layer discs to make the most of the High Definition master, it ought to look much better than it does here however. The image is certainly sharp and shows reasonably good detail even in wider shots, while the print is fairly clean with only minor white flecks of dustspots occasionally visible. Blacks however are rather flat and colours lack that extra fineness of definition that might be expected. The image also appears to be interlaced. On a progressive display, this shows the usual problems with combing and motion blurring, the image pulsating throughout. The flickering image also reveals some distracting banding and pixelation issues, particularly on backgrounds. The interlacing problem isn't quite so evident on a tube display, but is still is noticeable in pans and movements that are less than smooth and fluid. The need to change discs to view the whole film consequently does not seem justified by any corresponding improvement in quality, particularly since the point where the film is divided does not feel like a natural break.

The audio tracks are all strong, the original Cantonese track presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS options, with the addition of an obligatory Mandarin Dolby Digital 5.1 dub. The original Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is excellent, distributing the sound well with good tone, clarity and ambience, but the DTS mix, more than just being louder, has that extra edge with a slightly deeper, rounder tone.

English subtitles are optional and in a clear white font. Both the film and the extra features on Disc Three are all fully subtitled. The translation is generally good, but there are the usual minor flaws and dropped words - few of which will cause any problems.

There are no commentaries or deleted scenes, but the extras on Disc Three are nevertheless all worthwhile, and more importantly, they are all English subtitled.

A Conversation between Patrick Tam and Film Scholar Law Kar (34:08) - An interesting conversation, this interview covers the director's background well, his working methods and his intentions for the film. A film lecturer in Malaysia now, the script for After This Our Exile was written by one of his students and made during holiday leave from his teaching duties. The director covers the choice of settings and locations, the employment of photography, music and editing, talks about the actors and goes into detail on a couple of scenes and what he tried to achieve through them.

Exclusive Interview with Aaron Kwok (12:37) - The actor talks about his relationship with the director, his analysis of Sheng, his preparation for the role and how he and Tam worked together at portraying his character on the screen.

Making of After This Our Exile (27:17) - A little over-long and repetitive, the making of shows the director working on set, shooting and reshooting and getting the young Gow Ian Iskandar to perform. There are some interview snippets and some fun with the younger children on the set to lighten the tone.

The remainder of the extra features consist of a Poster and Photo Gallery of 48 images, a fabulous Hong Kong Theatrical Trailer (1:33) and a rubbish International Theatrical Trailer (1:58) made up solely of stills and the song You Are My Sunshine, and a Director's Filmography, with listings of awards received.

The merits of After This Our Exile and its winning of all the major awards at the Taipei Golden Horse and Hong Kong Film Awards will no doubt continue to be hotly debated, as will the question of whether the relatively thin story can be sustained by the full-length Director's Cut. At the very least however, Patrick Tam deserves all the awards and praise he has received for going against the trend for formulaic glossy Hong Kong crime movies and daring to make a personal film with smaller scale ambitions. It's not perfect, but the fact that this simple and affecting drama has touched an appreciative audience and been rewarded with critical acclaim is a promising sign indeed for the Hong Kong film industry. Panorama would appear to have pulled out all the stops with a 3-DVD boxset, sourcing a High Definition transfer and spreading the full Director's Cut of the film across two of those dual-layer discs, but incredibly the company retains their practice of interlacing their transfers and thereby undoing all the effort that has gone into this otherwise fine package.

by Noel Megahey - DVD Times

January 17, 2007

Aaron Kwok stars as Shing, a gone-to-seed, deep-in-debt father whose family has fallen apart - he just doesn't know it yet. His wife Lin (Charlie Young) plans on leaving him, and though her initial attempt is thwarted by son Lok-Yun (Goum Ian Iskandar), she's soon able to escape her relationship with Shing. Nobody would blame her for running away, as Shing is a class-A lout; he's a man who publicly embarrasses his wife and even hits her, finally locking her up to prevent her from leaving. Aside from being abused, Lin has also been responsible for paying Shing's gambling debts, and is seeing another man on the side. Once she sees her chance, she bolts, leaving Shing and Lok-Yun alone. After a full-on display of expected emotions, including anger, denial, frustration, and a little pathetic weeping, Shing must decide what to do next. He's lost his job, the loan sharks are after him to pay up, and he's nearly penniless. Luckily he still has his son's love and filial loyalty. But with each passing day of Shing's grossly unrepentant deadbeat status, that bond of blood threatens to become poisonous.

The Chinese title of After This Our Exile means "Father and Son", and despite the presence of Charlie Young, this is indeed their story. As the besieged Lin, Young is sympathetic during her initial scenes of domestic confinement, but she's out of the picture fairly soon, leaving the father and son to struggle together, and sometimes apart. Shing and son eventually slip into a desperate sort of existence, slowly sinking despite the father's meager attempts at climbing back up. Watching the pair fuddle about can be frustrating; Shing avoids the obvious method of getting back on his feet (duh, get a job), and instead resorts to shadier schemes, like minor theft, plus pimping out a lonely prostitute (Kelly Lin) who's staying at the same transient inn as the father-son pair. Shing finds little success, however, and the effect that it ultimately has on his son is surprising and even powerful. Young actor Goum Ian Iskandar gives a genuinely moving performance as the unfortunate Lok-Yun, whose only real crime is one of blood relation. Lok-Yun is too innocent to see that the road he and his father travel may lead to ruin, and by the time he realizes, it may be too late. Ultimately, the father and son may scar each other permanently.

Directed by long-absent Hong Kong New Wave director Patrick Tam, After This Our Exile is deceptively simple, possessing of only a bare bones plot and numerous scenes that seem more like repetition than plot development. And yet, the whole unfolds in an engaging manner, using exacting pacing, performances, and direction to spin a surprisingly effective tale of family ties gone wrong. Tam refuses to judge his unfortunate characters, letting their actions and emotions speak for themselves. Shing and Lin's relationship is emotionally exhausting and ugly, yet recognizable and even pathetic affection exists despite their disintegrated lives. The relationship between father and son is even more complex and compelling. Though Shing is more-or-less a complete creep, sympathy does manage to sneak in, especially because the son remains so hopeful that they'll make it through their trials. It's affecting stuff, as our sympathy for the characters shifts from time to time. As the film wears on, hope and sympathy rise and fall as each character makes one unfortunate decision after the next. Ultimately, there's little to be joyful about, but the journey surprises in its emotional power.

Aaron Kwok recently won Best Actor for his performance in After This Our Exile, marking the second time in two years that the formerly floppy-haired popstar has managed unexpected critical acclaim. The acclaim was harder to fathom for Divergence, where Kwok's emotional gravitas bordered on hammy, but for After This Our Exile, the actor gives a complete performance, successfully making his character into a real and even recognizable individual. Kwok has matured beyond playing cute kids and brooding prettyboys, and his decision to take on the role of a frighteningly inept father is to be commended. The performance's only debit may be that the character is perhaps written too broadly, openly revealing so many sides of the same man that he ends up bordering on bipolar. But Kwok comes through, filling his character with acute rage and the kind of blind self-delusion one can easily see in the people around them every day. For Kwok, this is brave, uncharted territory. Message to Aaron Kwok: we will no longer hold Millionaire Cop against you.

But heaping sizable praise on Kwok is still a but much, because After This Our Exile isn't Aaron Kwok's show, it's director Patrick Tam's. Returning to the director's chair for the first time since 1989's My Heart is That Eternal Rose, Tam delivers perhaps the most precise and exacting work of any Hong Kong director this year. The film eschews exposition and action for simmering characters and little movement, yet something vital seems to be happening in every shot or frame. Tam only plays the star director during a few key scenes, generally opting for canny camera placement and precise editing over showy directorial flourishes. When the latter moments do occur they can be jarring in their forced dissonance, but for the most part Tam keeps a lid on things, letting the audience find their way into the picture on their own. Results may vary; some may be drawn in by Tam's willingness to let the film breathe, while others may find his hands-off approach to be unbearably boring. This is understandable, as the film does not force itself upon the audience, and instead asks them to absorb what's presented to them. The highest-grossing film in Hong Kong for 2006 was Pirates of the Caribbean 2 - the very definition of a force-fed cinema experience - so most Hong Kong people probably skipped or would choose to skip After This Our Exile. Too bad; they're missing a great movie.

If After This Our Exile has any faults, it may be that the screenplay is perhaps too focused on its themes, and less on the sort of reality that would bring it greater credibility. The film delivers tremendous amounts of character and emotion, but the message here is not given to cinematic romanticism. After putting the audience through a dark emotional experience, the film regroups for a bittersweet finish - a move that works narratively, but almost seems disingenuous considering all that came before. Some characters lose credibility as the film progresses, some are introduced and then dropped, while others experience change that isn't fully explained by the passage of time. Too much seems omitted (though that may be the fault of the film's truncated 2-hour theatrical cut), which feels like an extra debit since the film uses repetition to reinforce its themes. The result is surprising and worthwhile, though not really beyond expectation, ultimately bringing the film in beneath classic status. Despite the screenplay's patience and insight, the situations and characters don't entirely measure up to the film's direction and production.

That said, the direction and production shore things up tremendously; obvious attention has been paid to even the smallest details, with high marks given to Mark Lee's golden cinematography and the gorgeously mundane Malaysia setting. Patrick Tam shows an amazing control over his material, taking a rather simple script and concept (take one bad family, and watch them disintegrate) and spinning cinematic gold. Tam gives the film class and power; his work here easily stands among the more impressive this year from a Hong Kong filmmaker (with perhaps only Johnnie To's work on Election 2 surpassing him). It's hard to believe that Tam couldn't secure a directing nomination at the Golden Horse Awards. After This Our Exile won Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Supporting Actor (for Goum Ian Iskandar), and Tam didn't even get nominated for Best Director! The Golden Horse Awards have been rather suspect with some of their choices in recent years (Kwok's win for Divergence is only one); you can chalk up Tam's snub as another unfathomable decision made by whoever is running the show at the Golden Horses. At least their choice for this year's Best Picture has some merit.

by Kozo -

This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Customer Review of "After This Our Exile (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for this Edition: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.4 out of 10 (5)
Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6.6 out of 10 (8)

See all my reviews

May 11, 2008

1 people found this review helpful

Good story Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
The story is ok. Lots of drama in it. I really like the boy's acting as well. Until the end, he blends well with Aaron. I think they both did a job well done. No wonder this movie received lots of award.
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July 20, 2007

This customer review refers to After This Our Exile (DVD) (Director's Cut) (3-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
2 people found this review helpful

Not Good Customer Review Rated Bad 2 - 2 out of 10
This film really could have been better. I thoroughly enjoyed the little boy's acting, which seemed to be the film's only strength!
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June 9, 2007

This customer review refers to After This Our Exile (DVD) (Director's Cut) (3-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
3 people found this review helpful

superb acting Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
The director cut's edition includes a digipack case with color picture booklet. This is an excellent edition if you like the movie. As for the movie, I thought Aaron Kwok did a superb job. He deserves the best actor award. I felt the movie was realistic because of his performance. The movie might be on the slow pace side, but it was interesting to watch his acting.
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Kevan Brighting
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June 3, 2007

This customer review refers to After This Our Exile (DVD) (Director's Cut) (3-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
3 people found this review helpful

Dreadful melodrama Customer Review Rated Bad 1 - 1 out of 10
This is based on the director's cut - this is really awful. No wonder 30 minutes was cut from the cinema release. Poor script, one-dimentional acting (except from the little kid) made this a turgid melodrama pretending to be an art film. Quite the worst film to emerge from HK for a long time. I shall be selling/giving away my copy immediately.
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Kevin Kennedy
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May 15, 2007

4 people found this review helpful

Gripping tale of lost souls Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
Patrick Tam's film, "After This Our Exile", is an indelible portrait of an irresponsible, self-destructive loser and the ruined lives he leaves in his wake. To summarize the movie in this manner may make it sound unwatchable, but the story is deeply engrossing. Throughout the film, the viewer hopes against hope that Aaron Kwok's character finally will pull his life together.

Kwok delivers an astonishingly brave and riveting performance as the brutal and controlling loser. Indeed, the entire cast, including Charlie Yeung, Ian Iskander Gouw, Kelly Lin, and Valen Hsu, deliver fine, well-modulated performances.

Patrick Tam's direction skillfully breathes life into what might otherwise have seemed a tendentious tale. The film is never preachy, but always very true to life. Indeed, by placing the focus on Aaron Kwok's character, the movie perhaps underemphasizes the horror of the choices made by Charlie Yeung's character. (Yeung's character walks away from her young son, leaving him in the hands of someone she knows to be an irresponsible and violent father, yet we commiserate with her for the ill-treatment she suffered at Kwok's hands.)

The film is beautifully shot and richly atmospheric. The choice of shooting the film in Malaysia perfectly underlines the alienation of its characters. This film is very, very highly recommended for a mature audience.
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