2 Young is one of my most favorite recent Hong Kong movies. To me, its a hidden gem because it does nothing to attract the audience in the first place but I like to root for the underdog and pick up weird movies. This one features Jackie Chan‘s son Jaycee Chan and I’m completely interested in how his career has been. This is not my first viewing but its been 2-3 years since I last saw it.
Director: Derek Yee
Fu (Jaycee Chan) is a young 18 year old in night school trying to complete his high school diploma while his family is not very well off. Nam (Fiona Sit) is the complete opposite: She is a 16 year old private school student whose parents are known lawyers in Hong Kong who are rich and have no time for her. Fu is attracted to her and looks for her outside her school every day from a distance until one time, Nam approaches him and asks him to take a chance to sneak in at the school’s annual Christmas party. After that, when they went camping together on New Year’s, they decided to have sex and few months later realizes that she is pregnant. Against both of their parents’s wishes, they run away and try to take care of themselves, be together and eventually take care of their future baby. With no help, no education and no money, they are forced to take things as it comes. Question is: will their young relationship be able to tough it out?
I’ve seen this movie since its release about 3-4 times. Every time it impacts me as its the first time I’ve seen it. Young, innocent, naive and reckless love happens all the time, so why does this impact me so much? 2 Young has a lot of pedigree. First off, we have Derek Yee, who is an amazing director. I haven’t reviewed much of his newer work but 10 years before this, he did Full Throttle and you can see the review HERE. He knows how to get the right shots and use the right tone.
Second of all, he has a great cast. I’m going to start off with the more renowned supporting cast. Eric Tsang is an Golden Horse Best Actor (Hong Kong equivalent of Oscars). He’s is a phenomenal actor. He is in the very famous Infernal Affairs, for example. This guy plays the father of Fu in this one. A poor, uneducated but morally correct man who wants to just love his wife and take care and protect his family. Playing opposite him is an actress who reappeared in the business with this movie, Teresa Mo used to be in a bunch of Stephen Chow’s movies and she does a great job and playing the common housewife and caring mother and supportive wife. The two mesh so well together. Then we come to an even more popular actor possibly: Anthony Wong. He plays the restricting and overly controlling and protective father of Nam who really just loses how to be a father and a husband at the same time as being a successful lawyer. Most of the time in the movie, I wanted to push him in the face to wake him up. That means he did a good job because I think that stubborn act really came through perfectly.
Third point is the unexpected factor. Back in 2005, Fiona Sit was cooling off a bit from her pretty successful pop star career and really I never expected much from her in this one but she has her charm. This was her first movie after a Hong Kong police drama. Jaycee Chan is Jackie Chan’s son so a lot of people have their eyes on how his future will turn out. He had already dipped his feet in a movie before (that I didn’t see) and also a bit into a singing career. He was completely new to me. What captured me was the storyline itself but these two had amazing chemistry and they acted the hell out of their roles. Maybe its because they are also young and they can somewhat relate to the pain, suffering but bittersweet love. They can feel their generation better so they fell right into the roles but they were downright amazing, tugged at my heartstrings and I loved them both so much. Let me just saying, my respect for them grew quite a bit after this.
I’m definitely going to recommend this. 2 Young is directed well, has wonderful and believeable characters to reflect on a social issue of young love and its consequences that shows that its not only sweet but tough. Its not only the view of the young ones but also parents. With a phenomenal cast from the young main actors and the renowned older ones as supporting roles, this movie successfully pulls the audience right in from the start and lets you experience a heartwarming and at times, heartbreaking journey. Its a well-executed story about young and reckless love and whether they can learn to take care of themselves and support people they love. As much as it seems like a romance, I’d say its more along the lines of coming of age story. If you ever come across it, its well worth your time.