Merely another masterpiece from the best director in the world under the age of 40. This time, Tran Anh Hung takes us to Hanoi, where he introduces us to 3 sisters who are having some difficulty with the menfolk. The narrative framework, if you must call it that (if you must have one at all), consists of a loosely-connected series of incidents that take place in the one-month period between the anniversaries of the mother's, then the father's, deaths. A conversation between the 3 sisters at the anniversary party of the mother's passing reveals that the women have put their parents on a worshipful pedestal: an attempt to casually investigate the mother's old boyfriend before she was married is firmly discouraged. (Though not prevented, as we shall see.) It's soon revealed why their parents' conduct is NOW viewed by them as ideal, as perfect: their own conduct, at this time in their lives, is not so ideal, and as imperfect as life itself. The oldest sister is in an unhappy marriage in which both spouses are cheating; the middle sister, pregnant, has a husband who's frightened by impending responsibility and is considering escape; the much-younger sister, played by the luminous Tran Nu Yen-Khe from *The Scent of Green Papaya*, has been so sheltered all her life that she remains unsure of the mechanics of conception, and finds nothing particularly taboo about flirting with her own brother. Speaking of that last, it occurs during the most recurrent scenes in the film: we intrude on the brother and sister during several mornings, watching them wake up, do some excercises, smoke cigarettes, flirt, eat . . . all to the soothing sounds of Lou Reed in his mellow, middle-age period. As the movie progresses, the scenes become laden with as many nuances and as much meaning as any mundane routine from your own life. But if you weren't paying attention, if you weren't focusing, you'll have missed them. Tran Anh Hung's movies, like any works of art, demand a level of involvement from YOU, the viewer, that standard Hollywood productions do not. So, know what you're getting into here. If you're ready for something serious, check out *The Vertical Ray of the Sun*.