Chungking Express – What Makes This Movie Great?
Watching movies is arguably the main bonding experience my partner Sydney and I have. We spend most of our days viewing movies together, sometimes two in one night with each of us picking one to view. Last night was one of my favorite viewing experiences together after we watched the 1994 film Chungking Express by Director Wong Kar-wai.
For those who don’t know, Wong Kar-wai is a Hong Kong film director, screenwriter, and producer. His films are characterized by nonlinear stories, atmospheric music, and vivid cinematography entangling assertive, saturated colors. Chungking Express is often regarded as one of his best and we both loved it.
Starring Tony Leung Chiu-wai, Faye Wong, Brigitte Lin, and Takeshi Kaneshiro, the film follows two melancholy Hong Kong policemen who fall in love: one with a mysterious woman underworld figure, the other with a captivating and ethereal waitress at a late-night restaurant he frequents.
One of my favorite YouTube channels, Learning About Movies, has a great video that articulates why this film is so great. As said in the video, Chungking Express is a movie that Quentin Tarantino loves and has made him cry for joy at its cinematic awesomeness.
Most importantly, the film is a fascinating example of a movie that pulls off the near-impossible by switching storylines and main characters in the middle of the movie. Most would argue this is a screenwriting sin, but it’s done so effortlessly, one can only respect the master that is Wong Kar-wai. I can’t wait to watch more of his films.
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