In this delicate, spellbinding romance, two school friends explore a lingering, deep connection that appears to transcend time and distance. Sundance and Berlinale 2023.
Na Young and Hae Sung are friends but also academic rivals in their Korean school. A budding childhood romance is prematurely ended when Na Young emigrates with her family to Canada, adopting the name Nora for her new life. Twelve years later, Nora (Greta Lee) is a student in New York working on becoming a writer, while Hae Sung (Teo Yoo) is doing military service in Korea. An intriguing social media query leads to an online reunion for the two. Catching up on a video call leads to further appointments, and love is once again on the cards. Flashing forward a further 12 years sees Hae Sung and Nora finally reunited in New York, when Hae Sung decides to visit the city for a week. By now Nora is happily married to Arthur (John Magaro), but this decades-later reunion raises the inevitable question of destiny and what might have been. Past Lives
beautifully reflects on the Korean concept of In-Yun – the idea that interactions in past lives can lead to meaningful or intended connections in the present. Past Lives
is a film of great ambition, and deep emotion, and in its intimate tale of two people, it also captures something profound and universal in us all.