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Banned in its day and unseen for decades, this newly rediscovered Taiwanese indie is an early milestone of queer cinema. As adolescent pals Yung-shen and Hsiao-tung kill sunny afternoons exploring caves and skinny-dipping, they develop an intimate and physical bond. But when one of the boys suddenly dies in an accident, the other channels his grief into becoming a surrogate son to the family of his lost friend, and the carefree grace of the film’s beginning morphs into a tender and moving melodrama. With its real-world exteriors, gorgeous black- and-white cinematography, outsider characters, and understated atmosphere, this lyrical indie recalls contemporaneous American trailblazers like The Exiles. An undeniably daring undertaking during Taiwan’s repressive regime, The End of the Track stops short of explicitly defining Yung-shen and Hsiao-tung’s relationship as romantic, but was still suggestive enough to be banned for its “homosexual undertones and ideology.” Thanks to the preservation efforts of the Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute, this valuable time capsule of late 1960s Taiwan can be seen and admired at last. (MK)

Presented with support from UW-Madison Center for East Asian Studies.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    91 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
  • Director
    Mou Tun-fei
  • Screenwriter
    Mou Tun-fei, Su Kuang-Shun
  • Producer
    Tien-Chien Yeh
  • Cast
    Tsai Tuu-yuan, Chen Dawei, Liou Yiin-shang, Yi Ming, Chang Ping-yu
  • Cinematographer
    Chang-Hui Hsu
  • Editor
    Chiu-Kuei Huang, Mou Tun-Fei
  • Music
    Chung-Hsin Chen