Sunday, December 17, 2006


A cold front came in yesterday and now it's rather cold. I've been feeling really sluggish and I've been wanting to eat a lot. Therefore I assume I must be hibernating. In order to keep warm, I've closed all my windows and doors and so I feel like a hamster in a small box.

I've also watched all of Wang Kar-wai's movies in the last three days except for Chungking Express, Ashes of Time, and As Tears Go By. For the record, that means I have watched Days of Being Wild, Fallen Angels (1.66 times), Happy Together (2 times), In the Mood For Love, and 2046. Clearly it's been rather existential. A student of mine once said that 2046 is like a summary of all of Wang Kar-wai's movies, so you have to see them all to understand it. Now that I've seen almost all of them, except Ashes of Time, I think I agree with her. Although this doesn't really make me like the movie a whole lot more. It also didn't make me like Zhang Ziyi a lot more either.

I will say there were a good ten to fifteen minutes where she impressed me with her acting, and about 35 minutes where I sort of understood why people say she's hot. However I think one of the reasons the film suffered was because she had no chemistry with Tony Leung. In the Mood for Love is a compelling story because you can believe that the two characters are in love. However Tony Leung and Zhang Ziyi's characters are supposed to be in love, but I never really felt it. Since their affair takes up a large part of the movie, this really hurts the movie's credibility.

That said, Faye Wong, Gong Li, and the Japanese guy (Takuya Kimura) are all very good. Tony Leung is ok. He was rather smug throughout the movie which made it difficult to connect with his character. I know he's supposed to be hiding fear and a broken heart, maybe he hides it a little too well for me. At least the heartless cad in Days of Being Wild had a reason of sorts for being heartless.

However, 2046's ending is rather interesting, since it states that love is all a matter of timing, sometimes two people are right for each other but the time's just not right, so nothing happens. After having seen most of Wang Kar-wai's movies this does seem to be a fitting conclusion for most of them. Many couples have missed connections in his films, Andy Lau and Maggie Cheung in Days of Being Wild, Leon Lai and Karen Mok, and Takeshi Kaneshiro and Charlie Young in Fallen Angels, Chang Chen and Tony Leung (possibly) in Happy Together, Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung (famously) in In the Mood for Love, and Tony Leung and Gong Li, and Tony Leung and Faye Wong in 2046. Clearly I have watched a lot of Wong Kar-wai in a short amount of time.

Well, I have nothing more to say on the subject. Except my theory that perhaps the graphic sex scenes with Zhang Ziyi was Wang Kar-wai's way of apologizing for coercing Tony Leung into doing a sex scene with Leslie Cheung in Happy Together.

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