Night and Day

It might’ve been the soju we drank during, but I found this to be Hong’s funniest so far. 

Could’ve just went on for another 144 minutes and I wouldn’t have minded. It flows effortlessly, just as Seong-nam wanders through Paris, passing time until he can (or wants to) go home, never truly being in any monetary crisis (thus not having much reason to leave) thanks to casino wins or just plainly finding a €50 note on the sidewalk. He’s bored, but it’s okay. He calls his wife in tears, how much he hates it there, and then has a pleasant time hanging out with art-students. It’s night and day. And it so perfectly captures that feeling of being in a new area, trying to get used to its rhythm and finding your place within it.

It reminded me a lot of Rendezvous in Paris’ final segment, which features a painter trying to persuade a woman who’s not interested in him, framed by meandering walks through Parisian streets and long conversations. The comparison is quite on the nose of course, but placing this in Rohmer’s city made the parallels a lot more apparent.

This might become my favourite Hong, but it might also be the soju talking.

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