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Celine Song

Past Lives

Director Celine Song Composer Christopher Bear, Daniel Rossen Cast Greta Lee, Teo Yoo, John Magaro
105' - 2022 - Drama, Romance - Dialogue: Korean, English
Inspired by the director's own past, Celine Song's debut shows the power of human connection - romantic or otherwise. Past Lives muses on the choices made and not made. An equally heartwarming and heartbreaking film.
Nora and Hae Sung, two Korean children, are two deeply connected friend. Their future lies with each other, so it seems. Until Nora emigrates to Toronto with her parents and later pursues her creative dream in New York. More than decades after saying goodbye in South Korea, the duo is reunited in the Big Apple, only now Nora is married to Arthur, an American writer. Together, they muse on the "what ifs", the lost but also the won opportunities. After all, life is full of roads not taken. Playwright Celine Song manages to capture that ultimate melancholy in her semi-autobiographical debut feature, a subversive love story that combines the longings of In the Mood for Love and the eloquent dialogues of Linklater's Before trilogy. Song goes beyond romance and the age-old clichéd question "who does she end up with?" to arrive at something much more human.

"This supremely confident feature debut from Korean-Canadian writer-director Celine Song is a spine-tingling gem - a tale of not-so-brief encounters between star-crossed souls, played out over a period of 24 years. Combining the aching yearning of Wong Kar-wai's In the Mood for Love with the casual intimacy of Richard Linklater's Before trilogy, it paints a picture of unresolved affection as delicate as it is profound, interweaving timeless themes of fate and providence with more playfully down-to-earth musings on happenstance and shapeshifting identity." - The Guardian

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Celine Song


Christopher Bear, Daniel Rossen


Greta Lee, Teo Yoo, John Magaro


Celine Song

Director of Photography

Shabier Kirchner


Keith Fraase


David Hinojosa, Pamela Koffler, Christine Vachon

Production studios



The Searchers

More info


Korean, English

Countries of production

United States of America




Celine Song
Past Lives (2022)