World of Wong Kar-Wai
- Hong Kong/China/France/Italy/Germany2004
- Wong Kar-Wai
- 129 DCP
- World of Wong Kar-Wai
“Ecstatically beautiful … An unqualified triumph.”Manohla Dargis, New York Times
Wong Kar-Wai’s fervently anticipated follow-up to In the Mood for Love was teased to be a science-fiction film, ostensibly set in 2046. When it finally arrived, after a five-year production marathon beset by, among other snags, an industry-halting SARS epidemic, 2046 wasn’t exactly the Wongian take on 2001 dreamed-up by fanciful cinephiles. Rather, it was an incognito sequel to Mood, reprising or remixing that film’s characters, themes, and 1960s setting, with elements of techno-futurism furnished by an allegorical SF story within the film. That story is being written by Chow Mo-Wan (Tony Leung Chiu-Wai), the love-scorned protagonist of Mood, who, in 1966, is holed up in a rundown Hong Kong hotel voyeuristically watching the goings-on in the adjacent room. Over three years, we catch fragments of Chow’s relationships with the revolving women next door — some amorous (Ziyi Zhang), some platonic (Faye Wong), all haunted by the absence of Chow’s true love. Sensual, elliptical, melancholic, and visually gorgeous — so, a Wong Kar-Wai film — 2046 is a ravishing conclusion to the unofficial trilogy that began with Days of Being Wild.
“A synthesizing, retrospective work, 2046 is the summation of Wong’s lyrical melancholia … Spectacular.”Nathan Lee, Film Comment