Director: Kar Wai Wong
Cast: Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Maggie Cheung, Lai Chen, Rebecca Pan, Paulyn Sun, Kelly Lai Chen, Man-Lei Chan, Tsi-Ang Chin, Roy Cheung
In the way that Lost in Translation remains my favorite film-- this movie captures and moves me somewhere deep below the surface. It doesn't always have to be said. It doesn't always have to be shown. We don't always have to rip each other's clothes off, cry, fight, or even talk to express the complications of our relationships. Sometimes we just keep secrets. We just look at one another. We just know.
Some call this film the greatest romance of 2001, and while I'm not entirely sure who that'd be up against-- I am still not afraid to agree.
The film takes you to a picture-perfect 1960s Hong Kong where two neighbors befriend one another once they realize their spouses are involved in an affair with one another. Leaning on each other for consolation, advice, and even supportive "rehearsals" for the various coping and confrontations involved with being the victims of infidelity, the two form a bond that blossoms into restricted, careful romance. Vowing not to be like their unfaithful spouses, the two waltz around each other carefully, creating one of the most beautiful and forbidden romances ever on screen.
The soundtrack, cinematography, and improvised script give the film a haunting and quiet feel that leaves you aching for resolution-- so much like real life that you forgot you're in a movie for long periods of time. While some might find these moments optimum for taking a bathroom break, certain movie-goers (myself included) found my eyes locked on the screen-- barely blinking, barely breathing!
A beautiful love story. Slowly unfolding.
Highly Recommended for the patient and romantic spirit.