Search icon

Movies & TV

15th Feb 2024

Netflix has just added one of 2023’s very best movies

Stephen Porzio

past lives

Holding 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, the film has been nominated at this year’s Oscars for Best Picture.

Past Lives, one of the very best movies of 2023, has just been added to Netflix’s library.

The debut film from writer-director Celine Song, the movie revolves two South Korean people, Nora (Greta Lee) and Hae Sung (Teo Yoo), who drifted apart as childhood friends after the former moved to the US.

Years later as adults they reconnect – with Hae Sung eventually travelling to New York to visit Nora.

However, complicating things is that Nora has since married an American man (John Magaro) and Hae Sung still harbours romantic feelings for her.

Past Lives is now on Netflix

Released in Irish cinemas last September, Past Lives earned near unanimous praise from critics for its powerful story, its fully-fleshed out characters, its sensitive direction and performances, as well as its themes of love, yearning and fate.

“Every so often, as is the case with Past Lives, a movie comes out of nowhere and just completely knocks you sideways with its profound relatability,” a previous review of the movie from JOE reads.

Boasting a 96% Rotten Tomatoes score, the film will also compete at the Oscars next month in two categories – Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay.

past lives

Teo Yoo, Greta Lee and John Magaro in Past Lives

Here’s a sample of some of the other praise Past Lives earned from critics:

Empire: “A transcendent debut for South Korean-Canadian filmmaker Celine Song, this romantic drama is a masterclass in slow, simmering storytelling. It will stay with you, maybe even into your next life.”

Globe and Mail: “This is a film containing oceans of truth, centuries of longing and vast feelings of open-hearted tenderness.”

Observer (UK): “Plaudits to the principal cast, who do a miraculous job of portraying inner conflict and ecstasy with the merest tilt of a head, or subtle shift of a shoulder.”

San Francisco Chronicle: “At its essence, this is a film for anyone who’s ever known the ache of ‘the one who got away’ and ‘what-if’.”

Washington Post: “Celine Song makes a quietly spectacular writing-directing debut with Past Lives, a lyrical slow burn of a film that expertly holds back wellsprings of emotion, until it unleashes a deluge.”

Past Lives is streaming on Netflix in Ireland and the UK right now.

Read more:

LISTEN: You Must Be Jokin’ with Aideen McQueen – Faith healers, Coolock craic and Gigging as Gaeilge