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The reunion takes on a surprising emotional depth in this sequence from the drama Past Lives.
Filmed in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park, the scene begins with the character Hye-sung (Taeo Yoo) waiting for the arrival of her childhood sweetheart, Nora (Greta Lee), whom she hasn’t seen in person in 24 years.
“What we were trying to capture here is a mixture of anxiety and excitement waiting for an old friend,” said Celine Song, the film’s writer and director, in narrating the scene. .
The moment continues almost without words when Nora arrives. “The way I wrote this in the script is it’s as if he sees ghosts. And she sees ghosts too.”
While the two interact awkwardly, they mostly keep their distance, and the camera (photographed by Xavier Kirchner) moves back and forth as they converse, spending time with each person. Director Song said he wanted to keep both the characters and the audience in a state of admiration and happiness in this scene.
Read the “Past Lives” review.
Read our interview with actress Greta Lee.
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