Xiao Wu’s existence revolves around school, an empty apartment and the dubious comforts in instant noodles. One day, his routine is subtly transformed by a tenant in the apartment, who is nursing a heartache. Their paths cross only once in a while. Longing for human contact Xiao Wu tries all he can to make a connection through physical and metaphorical walls in that hour between night and day.
About The Film
A meditation on absence and longing, 4:30 is about a moment, and a boy’s attempt to cling to it, escaping his drab reality. 4:30 traces the relationship between Zhang Xiao Wu and his tenant Jung, a thirty-something Korean man. Told entirely from the perspective of the boy, this story of two very different characters is less about friendship than about a shared experience and appreciation of solitude. 4:30 was conceived while I was filming my first feature 15. I was doing a lot of late night shoots and would normally still be up at 4:30 am. I realised that this is a very lonely time of the day, in fact I think probably the loneliest.
It feels too late to go to sleep yet at the same time, too late to be awake. I’ve heard a rumour that the suicide rate at this time is apparently the highest. The premise of 4:30 is built around 2 lonely people who share and probably find a kind of unspoken connection through their loneliness. The reason for using a Korean character was in part, a way of thanking the people at Pusan especially the Pusan International Film Festival for their tremendous support for many of my short films over the last few years. It was also my intention to show that oneliness is universal and cross – cultural hence there is very little dialogue in the film 4:30. Emotions of the characters are told through their body language like their eyes and facial expressions, or subtle cues of their hands. This perhaps also opens more doors to interpretation for the audience as well.
- Berlin Film Festival
- Black Movie Festival, Geneva
- Deauville Film Festival
Directed by Royston Tan Written by Royston Tan / Liam Yeo Executive Producers Eric Khoo / Jacqueline Khoo
Produced by Gary Goh / James Toh / Makota Ueda Associate Producers Chieko Murata / Tan Fong Cheng
Starring Xiao Li Yuan / Kim Young Jun Cinematography by Lim Ching Leong Music by Hualampong Riddim Art Director Daniel Lim
Edited by Low Hwee Ling Distributed by Shaw Organization Int. Sales Agent Celluloid Dreams
Release date 29 June 2006 (Singapore) Running time 93 minutes Language Korean / Mandarin / English