The whiplash, double-pronged Chungking Express is one of the defining works of nineties cinema and the film that made Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar-wai an instant icon. Two heartsick Hong Kong cops (Takeshi Kaneshiro and Tony Leung), both jilted by ex-lovers, cross paths at the Midnight Express take-out restaurant stand, where the ethereal pixie waitress Faye (Faye Wong) works. Anything goes in Wong’s gloriously shot and utterly unexpected charmer, which cemented the sex appeal of its gorgeous stars and forever turned canned pineapple and the Mamas and the Papas’ “California Dreamin’” into tokens of romantic longing. —The Criterion Collection
Born in Shanghai, he moved to Hong Kong with his parents at the age of five. Coming from the Mainland and speaking only Mandarin and Shanghainese, he had a difficult period of adjustment to Cantonese speaking Hong Kong, spending hours in movie theatres with his mother. He made his directing debut in 1988 with As Tears Go By, produced by Alan Tang. It was a crime melodrama of the kind then hugely popular, and with heavy borrowings from Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets (1974), but already displayed one of his principal trademarks in its atmospheric and sometimes expressionistic color palette. It is his only box office hit to date. Wong went on to direct several more feature films in the 1990s, among these were Chungking Express (1994), Fallen Angels (1995), Ashes of Time (1994). His first major international recognition was at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival where he won the Best Director prize for Happy Together (1997). The filming of In the Mood for Love (2000) had to be shifted from Beijing… read more
Year 1994, What a prosperous year for the new age cinema start up and the new rising of late modern cinematography. Wong Kar Wai is showing the power of empressionism and its great skill of shooting. On the otherhand, , Lars Von Trier is getting ready for the new cinematograpy with its Dogme approach. My personal lregards to mid 90's.
The initially amusing- but ultimately- nostalgic contrast of the song "What a Diff'rence a Day Makes" paired with audible flight safety instructions. The playful chemistry amid textures of smoke and light; a soft, blurry dream, and a broken reflection of a cherished memory. That impending toy plane flying in the hands of the cop to catch the stewardess, arriving as inevitably the way her own life suddenly will.
when i read this page automatically i sing california dreamin, please tell me why?? :)
Only Wong Kar Wai could open my mind up to the world of romance, sensuality and sensitivity in film. Before discovering his work, almost anything centered around romance was corny and/or stupid to… read review
La canción del titulo suena hasta el cansancio en la historia entre Faye y el personaje de Tony Leung, y es una excelente metafora para esta desigual cinta. O la amas o la odias, pero eso si, es adicitiva… read review