2046 (China/HK)

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2046 (China/HK)

Postby howardschumann(d) » Wed Jun 08, 2005 6:58 pm


Directed by Wong Kar Wai (2004)

In 2046 by Hong Kong director Wong Kar Wai, a mysterious train brings travelers to the year 2046 where they can recapture lost memories because nothing ever changes. The narrator tells us that "no one has ever come back from 2046, except me." Continuing with the theme of missed connections and ephemeral relationships begun in his earlier films, Wong's latest work is a meditation on the pain of loss and the inability to live in present time. The plot centers on Chow's relationships with women who occupy room 2046 in the hotel where he met Maggie Cheung in In the Mood for Love. He seduces the women, then abandons them, suppressing and denying his emotions or turning them into science fiction or erotic stories about whispering secrets. The film has a dreamlike quality and can be confusing with its non-linear structure but with the gorgeous cinematography, exquisite costumes, soft lighting, songs of Nat King Cole and opera extracts from Bellini's Norma, you may not even notice.

Tony Leung is Chow Wo Man, a playboy who writes stories for the local newspaper. Much of the action takes place in Hong Kong in the 1960s during a period of political unrest. Chow brings Lulu (Carina Lau), a drunken girl, home to sleep in room 2046 but she is not there when he returns in a few days, having been murdered by a jealous boyfriend. He is then forced to rent 2047 next door while 2046 is being cleaned up. The first affair is with Bai Ling (Ziyi Zhang), a dancer and call girl. He hears the sounds of lovemaking with each male client she brings to her room, then invites her to have a drink with him and presents himself as her new lover. Thinking she means more to him than a one-night stand, Bai Ling falls in love with him but is heartbroken when she discovers the truth and moves out.

The next occupant of the room is the hotel owners daughter, Wang Jen Wing (Faye Wong) who is passionately in love with a Japanese man, Takuya Kimura, over her father's objections. She suggests that Chow write a science fiction novel based on her life and he begins to write a novel called 2046 about a Japanese man who has an affair with an android in a futuristic Hong Kong. Chow also has a brief affair with a gambler in Singapore, Su Li Zhen (Gong Li), known as the Black Spider because she wears a mysterious black glove on her hand. He asks her to go to Hong Kong with him but she rejects his offer using the device of a card trick and both leave with regret.

A feeling of sadness pervades all of these affairs and they have a strange similarity. Songs, stories, and relationships are repeated as if Chow is playing a tape recorder without a stop button. The characters may be in the mood for love but the experience seems to be beyond their grasp and they spend much energy living in their memories. Like other of Wong's characters, Chow is a "blind mourner", incapable of choice, condemned to living in a circular stream of remorse, regret, and stagnation. 2046 can get a little tiresome with its proliferation of damaged characters and over stylization, yet it is a sensual and richly elegant film that makes a powerful statement about the emotional disconnection of modern life.


Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby hengcs » Fri Jul 08, 2005 5:25 pm

The official website is here ...

Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby hengcs » Wed Aug 10, 2005 5:04 am

If you are in US, it is screening now ...

Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby kookook » Wed Aug 10, 2005 4:32 pm

The famous Hong Kong director, best known for his hit "In the Mood for Love", will have his latest work unveiled at an opening ceremony next month in Beijing, one week before its September 30th nationwide release. Tickets for the premiere of the romantic sci-fi movie are said to be going for 2,046 yuan or about 247 US dollars.

Cheap, isnt it ?

Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby A » Wed Aug 24, 2005 1:53 pm

Ill just borrow the DVD if I want to see it.

Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby trevor826 » Wed Aug 24, 2005 2:35 pm

The famous Hong Kong director, best known for his hit "In the Mood for Love", will have his latest work unveiled at an opening ceremony next month in Beijing, one week before its September 30th nationwide release. Tickets for the premiere of the romantic sci-fi movie are said to be going for 2,046 yuan or about 247 US dollars.

This news was from 2,004, the film has done the rounds and has been available on DVD for quite a while now.

Cheers Trev.

Re: 2046 (China/HK)

Postby wpqx » Sat Sep 03, 2005 1:18 am

Well procrastination might have paid off again. Seeing numerous DVD imports of this I decided to wait it out. I wanted to see this on the big screen for two reasons. One, it seemed like a BIG film. Two, I've never seen a Wong film in a theater, and was unaware of when my next opportunity might be. A third reason arose but I only realized it during the opening of the film. If I saw this in the theater I would be forced to pay more attention to it than I could at home.

Like most people sifting through this film I was a little baffled by the intro. Not to despair I figured I would let the story sort itself out. I knew many movies that started confusing as hell and wound up making perfect sense eventually. 2046 settled into some sort of order, but the list of unanswered questions for myself is still rather long. I can start with a basic question, what the hell was the returning from 2046 about, and what was all that crap about in the future, and when does the film really take place?

Most of this doesn't matter though. The real thrust of the story is in the individual relationships. These encounters represent traditional Wong quite well. He even keeps his cast relatively similar to make it feel more familiar. Tony Leung I believe has been in every film of Wong's that I've seen, so not surprised to see him here. I'll always look at him a little oddly because the first film of his I'd seen was Happy Together, and this passionate lover was directing his attentions to the same sex. He does a remarkable job here. He let's us in just enough to grasp what he's feeling, but not enough to be completely satisfied. We don't really learn more about him than he knows. In this story he seems to be finding out about himself, but despite his appearance we do sense his emptiness.

Visually it was amazing, but I've come to expect that from this director. The ending and the whole android subplot made little sense to me. I found it comical when titles kept saying "1 hour later", "10 hours later", or "100 hours later". I'm not sure if we were supposed to laugh, but I was reminded of Un Chien Andalou, when suddenly a title says "16 Years Ago" and the shot resumes. I believe the point was that time is irrelevant. Despite showing us four different Christmas Eve's, our character was the same, and it wouldn't have mattered if 1969 was 1966 or 1967. I guess the same could go for that future train ride where we never find out how long the trip takes. It doesn't matter where we're going, only matters what happens on the way there I suppose.

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