Ben Sachs’s review published on Letterboxd:
I feel that I wrote about this significantly when it was released in Chicago in 2012. Here's a link to one of my pieces on it, which is probably the most fleshed-out:
In the nine years since I first saw it, my estimation for A SIMPLE LIFE has only risen. I consider the film more than just a statement on the plight of the elderly in contemporary society; it encompasses the alienation felt today by people of all ages. Even the lighthearted scenes of Andy Lau's character and his childhood friends exhibit a melancholy tinge—they suggest that the happiness these men are remembering will never be recaptured.
I admire every Ann Hui film I've seen, but this remains my personal favorite. It tackles sensitive subject matter in a way that's heartfelt yet understated, exuding the sort of toughness one gains from caring for someone who's infirm.