Chungking Express: Movie Review

Chungking Express Movie Review: Timeless Three Decades After

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"Chungking Express" is the kind of film that won't be for everyone - that's a guarantee. But if you like you like your film to be more than just a blockbuster and casual experience and you like your art deep, then "Chungking Express" certainly fits the bill. This is the kind of film that just keeps on giving and you'd appreciate better the more times you watch it.

A tale of two Hong Kong policemen who both struggle with love. Cop 223 (Takeshi Kaneshiro) struggles to move on when his long-time girlfriend decided to dump him on April 1. He waits for one month to find out if she's truly serious. As his deadline approaches, he meets a blonde wig girl (Brigitte Lin) who just might be his way out of his heartbreak. Cop 663 (Tony Leung Chiu-wai) is also dealing with a breakup. Unbeknownst to him,  Faye (Faye Wong) who is an assistant in the eatery he frequents has taken an interest on him. When she gets access to his apartment's keys, she tries to cheer him up in secret by cleaning up and redecorating his apartment.

A masterpiece will always be a masterpiece and "Chungking Express" at almost three decades old doesn't miss a beat. This film still holds weight and is both a time capsule to the Nineties and as significant to modern times as the day it was released. This film will be best appreciated if you give your full attention to it - its secrets and its message about love won't be revealed and given in a straightforward fashion. If you try to take this straight up then its narrative will most probably be off-putting, maybe even senseless. Our best advice is to give in and go with the flow. Be one with its four main characters and you'll find yourself appreciating the intricacies and nuances that Wong Kar-wai has crafted. Our biggest gripe with the film though was how imbalanced the two main stories turned out to be. The first story about Cop 223 doesn't hold a candle to the second story about Cop 663. It's not that the acting and cinematography were lower in quality (these are also the strongest aspects of "Chungking Express" from start to finish) but its that the second story was just substantially more intriguing and better developed in our opinion. The stark difference in tone and in its impact to us was something that we cannot and would not deny. Regardless, there's a reason why "Chungking Express" is a film that has been celebrated time and time again and we're glad we were able to experience it first hand finally.  

Rating: 4 reels

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