In the Mood for Love

In the Mood for Love ★★★★½

Quickie Review 
It’s my second Wong Kar-wai movie and it’s just as beautiful as Chungking Express but the dreamy nature of the aforementioned film is replaced in this movie with melancholy bittersweetness. Set in Hong Kong circa 1962 during the country’s occupation by the British, the story follows a man (Tony Leung) and a woman (Maggie Cheung) who live in the same building and one day, they find out that their spouses were having an affair. The situation leads the two to slowly develop feelings for each other. Ever since I got a free month of The Criterion Channel, it’s been nothing more than an epic film school education but without the huge tuition and student loans and whatnot. Movies like this have been teaching me advanced filmmaking and sure, E.T. and Star Wars are still the best movies that taught me a lot about movies but films like this one have taught so much more. For instance, In the Mood for Love has taught me that if you’re going to make a movie that requires a lot of emotion and depth, then that emotion and depth must bleed through the screen with great believability and as I watched, I believed everything that I was seeing, right down to Leung & Cheung’s scenes together. I didn’t see actors, I saw two people bonded by a mutual marital situation and it’s woven together into a bittersweet conclusion. Much like Chungking Express, Wong Kar-wai’s In the Mood for Love (花樣年華) is a must-see essential for fans and casual viewers of Hong Kong cinema. Definitely worth recommending!

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