Such a beautiful movie.
“Love and dreams are miraculous. They don’t need to be heard, to be said, or translated.”
This movie is the perfect example of – you don’t need words to tell a good story. Although the plot doesn’t have any major events or life-turning points for the characters, the story still succeeds to draw the viewer into watching it until the end.
‘Hear me’ tells the story of Yang Yang (played by Ivy Chen) who promised her father to take good care of her deaf older sister Xiao Peng (played by Yanxi Chen). Because the father left to Africa to do missionary work, Yang Yang has to do multiple work to support her sister’s dream of participating/winning the in the Deaflympics.
One day, while doing his usual delivery, Tian Kuo (played by Eddie Peng ) sees Yang Yang at the pool where the deaf team was training, and falls for Yang Yang. Given his personality, Tian Kuo starts interacting with Yang Yang – asks for her MSN . After seeing her doing multiple works which lead her to not take proper care of her meals, Tian Kuo starts saving each day a lunch box from his parents’ store to deliver it to Yang Yang. Along the way, both Tian Kuo and Yang Yang, mistake each other as being deaf people, they end up communicating in sign language the whole time.
The boy becomes more immersed with Yang Yang and wants to know more about her, however all she thinks of and speaks of is her older sister’s dream and how to support that dream. Since he successfully received her MSN, Tian Kuo sends her every night messages, still because Yang Yang doesn’t have time to stay on MSN (given the many jobs she has), Tian Kuo makes his own imaginary replays of Yang Yang.
Luckily for Tian Kuo, Yang Yang accepts to eat lunch with him with the condition of being her treat – after all he gave her lunch boxes for free almost every day. After eating their lunch, Yang Yang takes out her bag of coins (hard worked coins) and begins to count them. Considering that counting the coins took too much time, and seeing other customers waiting for the table, Tian Kuo pays for the meal. Although, Tian Kuo was being considerate of the people around, Yang Yang took his action as offensive, thinking that he looks down on her for paying in coins and on her way of earning money.
While Tian Kuo and Yang Yang were having their ‘date’, the apartment above Yang Yang and Xiao Peng’s place caught fire. Because Xiao Peng fell asleep, she didn’t notice the neighbors knocking at the door hence Xiao Peng s inhaled a lot of smoke. When Yang Yang finds out about it, she starts blaming herself for the accident saying that if she was home, Xiao Peng wouldn’t have been affected. Tian Kuo, who feels apologetic about the money issue, sends Yang Yang a few messages in which he apologizes, but there is no reply from her.
Yang Yang starts drifting more and more away from Tian Kuo to focus on her sister’s dream. Xiao Peng senses that her younger sister is giving up her life for her dream and tells Yang Yang to also think about herself.
Seeing their son gloomy, the parents ask him what’s on his mind; Tian Kuo confesses to his father that the girl he likes, Yang Yang, is deaf. Later the father tells the mother about the girl that their son likes, being deaf, after talking, both parents are taken aback and don’t know how to react at the sudden news.
Another day, Xiao Peng tells her younger sister again that she should also focus on her own dreams and life. After talking everything about their life, Xiao Peng noticed that Yang Yang never says straight forward that she likes Tian Kuo but she always says that she thinks of him.
Xiao Peng : I did not give up on swimming and you shouldn’t give up on him.
Tian Kuo receives an envelope from Yang Yang with the money she owned him for the lunch boxes. Although he wants to run after her, he returns back to his parents’ store. The two ask him why he returned and didn’t follow Yang Yang. He then asks his parents if they will accept her, since she is deaf; surprisingly, the parents are okay with it.
The parents: We should find time to learn sign language.
After hearing his parents say that, Tian Kuo runs to find Yang Yang; when he finally finds her, since Tian Kuo still thought Yang Yan was deaf, he starts making his own ‘scrip’ aloud, behind her back on how to ask her to come and meet his parents.
Tian Kuo: I want to introduce you to my parents.
Yang Yang: Why?
Tian Kuo: Because I like you. I want to be your boyfriend.
Yang Yang: But I can’t hear… they won’t accept me.
Tian Kuo: They will see. Anyway you told me before, if the deaf cannot see, then they will be uneasy. I guarantee, I will let them and you see my love for you.
– Tian Kuo’s imaginary script
Yang Yang hears everything from his imaginary script, however when she turns around, out of nervousness, he changes the parts of “like, love” saying through sign language that he wants her to meet his parents to give her work at his parents’ store.
I will stop here with the recap (?) and watch the movie to find out how he finds out that she can hear.
Story: There aren’t much (actual) lines in ‘Hear Me’, the two main characters talk mostly in sign language since the they mistaken each other as being deaf, however as I said it in the beginning of the post, this movie didn’t need lines to tell a story, it was nice as it was. Simple and beautiful.
The acting is good, done in a really natural way. Although the story may seem simplistic, even boring to others, I personally through the acting of all the characters, but manly the two young actors Ivy Chen and Eddie Peng gave life to Yang Yan respectively Tian Kuo in a gracefully manner but still managing to show their characters’ complexity.
Verdict: I recommend “Hear Me”! Watch it while drinking a cup of tea, enjoy the story and just relax.