olivia’s review published on Letterboxd:
"he remembers those vanished years as though looking through a dusty window pane. the past is something he could see, but not touch."
20x5 - directors // (13/100)
wong kar-wai (film 3)
october scavenger hunt (#55) // (13/36)
task 27 - watch a movie that competed at cannes festival but didn't win any prizes (i know this doesn't really work for this task but i chose it because it was nominated for the palme d'or and didn't win, i also just had a really really hard time finding a film to fit this task, so this was the best i could do)
chain reaction challenge // (13/100)
maybe this will be surprising to people that i'm not giving this a 5, honestly it's surprising to me as well. there are things i really thought were amazing about this film, but there were things that were missing for me, too. the amazing wistful, longing nostalgia and the masterclass cinematography were both some of the best and most successful elements of the film for me. this is also by far the most coherent of all the stories i've seen of wong kar-wai's, but for some reason i think i like him best when he's at his most incoherent, breathless, dreamy and restless. like fallen angels, for example. that story makes far less sense than in the mood for love does, but it struck much more of a chord with me. i'm really not sure why; in theory, in the mood for love is olivia-core to the max. don't get me wrong though, i still really really liked it and am super glad i saw it. i just don't know why it didn't hit me like some of his others have.
this film is by far wong kar-wai's slowest and most confined that i've seen. his characters are constantly passing each other by, but never able to touch. their souls are in an endless loop of separation, even when they are close to each other. this is tragic, and i felt sadness at the struggle the characters had together. when the music was playing was, for the most part, when they were at their most alone, most solitary, most distanced. and the music was *incredible*. one of the best recurring themes i've ever heard in a film.
i've often heard in the mood for love described as wong kar-wai's best work; i think i had it built up in my head as his magnum opus. maybe it just couldn't meet these high expectations i had set upon it. this piece feels much more grounded, rooted, held in place than anything else i've seen of his. i think this film is honestly very different from his others, it almost doesn't feel directed by him at all. on one hand it feels much more elevated, finished, elaborate, eloquent. but of this refinement, i feel something of the most essential fragments of who wong kar-wai is as a director at his core was lost.. for some reason this didn't have the same magic that i usually fall in love with from him. i think honestly it was missing some of the disparaging apathy and angst i've come to expect, which is weird because this is his most clear version of doomed love from what i've seen. so, all in all, i think it's clear i have mixed feelings on this film. i really really liked it, but unfortunately didn't love it. i just didn't feel what i'm used to feeling when i watch a wong kar-wai. but again i'm so glad to have seen it, and i've been wanting to see it for so long, so maybe a rewatch of it would improve my feelings about it.
(wong kar-wai - ranked)
(part of my priority watchlist of 2020)